Man Found Dead, Wife Injured on Bolivar Peninsula as Cindy Batters Coast

Galveston beaches on June 21 as the tide rolls in.
Galveston beaches on June 21 as the tide rolls in. Stephen Paulsen
A couple was found near the shore of the Gulf Coast on Bolivar Peninsula Thursday morning, with one man dead and his wife suffering non-life-threatening injuries, according to the Galveston County Sheriff's Office.

Authorities discovered the couple at the intersection of state highways 87 and 124, right near High Island Beach. Chief Deputy Vic Maceo said the car was flooded and that the husband was deceased; his wife was transferred to the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston in stable condition.

The couple had been missing from Winnie, Texas, in Chambers County since Tuesday and the Department of Public Safety had issued a Silver Alert, which it discontinued today. Maceo said there is so far no sign of foul play in the man's death.

Earlier reports in the Houston Chronicle, citing Galveston County sheriff's officials, said the couple may have had a suicide pact, but Maceo said there was no information to suggest that at this time. He would not release any additional information.

Galveston County Emergency Management spokeswoman Brittany Vega said State Highway 87 can be a particularly treacherous stretch during heavy storms, and that SH 87 became impassable at one point overnight, in the early morning hours, and had to be shut down. Debris had piled up in the roadway, as the high tide and Tropical Storm Cindy rolled in. The highway has since reopened.

The Bolivar Peninsula had been under voluntary evacuation since Wednesday, which is set to be lifted at noon today, Vega said. She said the Red Cross had opened a shelter, and that officials are always particularly concerned about people who rely on electric medical equipment that they could lose access to in the case of a power outage. Should Highway 87 and the ferries shut down, residents would be trapped.

Still, Vega said she is unaware of any people who went to the shelter.

"Everyone who lives on Bolivar Peninsula," she said, "this is kind of a way of life for them."
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Meagan Flynn is a staff writer at the Houston Press who, despite covering criminal justice and other political squabbles in Harris County, drinks only one small cup of coffee per day.
Contact: Meagan Flynn