"It's so unfair", said Esmeralda Saldiva, the children's aunt through marriage. His brother, Manuel "Sammy" Saldivar, was behind the wheel when he lost control of the vehicle.
"Obviously, they are devastated, as we all are as well", Gonzalez said.
We are sad to report we have found a van inundated by Greens Bayou flooding while purportedly carrying 6 family members Sunday.
Hanging onto a tree branch, he tried to rescue the others but couldn't before the van was swept away, they said. Witnesses told the station that emergency crews in the area were not able to reach the van in time to rescue the six inside. He told the children inside to try and get out through the back door, but they were unable to. The van plunged into the water as Sammy watched.
Samuel Saldivar had been driving his relatives to safety when rising floodwaters suddenly "overcame" their van, according to CBS affiliate KHOU-TV, which first reported the tragedy in northern Harris County, Texas. He described a lucky break for his brother Sammy, who was able to pull himself out of a van he was driving as it was caught up in unsafe floodwaters in Houston. They'll have to wait for the storms to pass to look for it. Chaplains were en route to comfort relatives gathered on a nearby bridge.
"He's still blaming himself", Ric Saldivar said.
He was with them the morning flooding began in their neighborhood.
Sammy Saldivar had yelled at 16-year-old Devy, 14-year-old Dominic, 8-year-old Xavier, and 6-year-old Daisy to climb into the back of the van, to open the back hatch and get out.
Ric Saldivar takes comfort knowing his parents died together.
The family identified the missing as Manuel Saldivar. He didn't think they had much time left.
"I can already imagine Dad holding Mom's hand real tight as the water rushed in", Ric told CNN.