A Texas mother who drowned on Tuesday while saving her 3-year-old daughter during the massive flooding of Hurricane Harvey has been identified as Collette Sulcer, of Beaumont.
Sulcer, 41, pulled over on an I-1o service road and exited her vehicle with her toddler daughter when the tropical storm’s floods made it dangerous and impossible to drive. As they walked from the car, the pair got swept into a canal by heavy flooding. They floated around a mile away from Sulcer’s vehicle before they were found.
After authorities spotted Sulcer, two Beaumont Police and fire rescue divers grabbed her and the baby before they disappeared under a trestle. Beaumont Police reported that the child would have died had they went under the trestle, as the divers wouldn’t have been able to reach her.
Police reported that Sulcer put a backpack on her daughter’s back, which helped her float while holding onto her mother. Sulcer all tried desperately to keep her baby’s head above water, which ultimately cost her her own life. In the wake of the tragedy, she’s been hailed a hero for giving up her life to save her little girl.
“They were in the water for quite some time,” Officer Carol Riley, a spokeswoman for the Beaumont Police Department, told PEOPLE. “When the baby was found, the baby was clinging to her. The mother did the best she could to keep her child up over the water….The baby also had a backpack that was helping her float on her back and she was holding on to her mom.”
The little girl is in stable condition and with family members.
The National Hurricane Center (NHC) said a whopping 51.88 inches of rain dropped on Texas due to Hurricane Harvey, a record for any storm in the continental United States.
[Feature Photo: Facebook]