On 20th anniversary of Queen Isabella Causeway collapse, community remembers lives lost
The cities of South Padre Island and Port Isabel held a remembrance ceremony Wednesday morning on the 20th anniversary of the collapse of Queen Isabella Causeway.
Eight people died after a barge crashed into the causeway, knocking out a stretch of the bridge on Sept. 15, 2001.
Families of the victims and survivors filled every seat. The Port Isabel Fire Department also attended the event to remember Robert Harris, the former fire chief, who died.
“I’m here because my brother was a victim" said Dalia Esquivel. "We miss them and they were our heroes and even though it’s been this long already, they forever live in our hearts.”
The cities honored the victims Robert "Bob" Harris, Hector Martinez Jr., Harpoon Barry Welch and Chelsea Welch of Port Isabel; Julio Mireles of Los Fresnos; Robin Leavell of Mercedes; Stvan Francisco Rivas of Humble, Texas; and Gaspar S. Hinojosa of Kingsville, Texas, according to the city of Port Isabel.
The survivors of the crash, Rene Mata, Gustavo Morales and Bridgett Goza, were also honored.