8 confirmed deaths in Houston area's historic flooding

By Nakia Cooper - Senior Web Editor , Phil Archer - Reporter

HOUSTON - Eight people were killed after heavy storms caused historic flooding in the Houston area Tuesday, City of Houston officials have confirmed.

A 64-year-old woman was found dead inside an SUV in the 5700 block of Ranchester.  She has been identified as Nihad Jeries Konsul.

A woman's body was found at 4300 S. MacGregor near the 5400 block of Aardmore in the Brays Bayou. The ME's Office said the woman, identified as 85-year-old Shirley Alter, is believed to be a passenger of an HFD boat rescue that capsized during high waters in the bayou.

Her husband's body was found Thursday night near the Port of Houston. Jack Howard Alter was 87 years old.

The body of Christopher Nicholas Kirby, 35, was discovered inside his vehicle after it was inadvertently towed to a local storage facility at 1700 Studewood.

The body of a 50-year-old man was found in the bayou behind a parking garage at 1700 Holcombe. The man has been identified as Anh Phan Nguyen and is also believed to be a passenger of the capsized HFD boat.

Dennis Lee Callihan, 66, died in the 1400 block of W. Loop South.  It is believed the man died of a heart attack after assisting a stranded motorist. His official cause of death is pending an autopsy.

On Wednesday morning, a body was recovered outside a pickup truck found under the Southwest Freeway and West Loop interchange. The man was identified as 31-year-old Jose Ybera-Ibarra.

A woman in Fort Bend County was found dead after her vehicle was discovered submerged in a ditch in Rosenberg.

On Tuesday, more than 10 inches of rain fell in Sugar Land and 9.28 inches in Stafford. The White Oak Bayou had 7.88 inches of rain fall. Baytown saw 5.60 inches of rain fall and Spring Valley had 7.48 inches.

For Harris County, the west and southwest areas were hardest hit with 9-11 inches of rain. The highest rainfall rates were recorded at Brays Bayou and Beltway 8 (11 inches), Brays Bayou and Bellaire Boulevard (10.7 inches), and Buffalo Bayou and Beltway 8 (10.3 inches) in west Houston. The rest of the county received 4-6 inches of rain.

Gov. Greg Abbott was in Houston to survey the damage Tuesday. He and Harris County Judge Emmett issued a County and State Disaster Declaration.

"This and Tropical Storm Allison are the worst two flooding situations that I've seen," Abbott said. "Part of the effective response in this flood was because of lessons learned in the aftermath of Allison."

The American Red Cross has opened up several shelters in the Houston area: 

  • Chinese Community Center, 9800 Town Park Drive, Houston, TX 77036

  • Acres Homes Multi-Service Center at 6719 W. Montgomery Rd., Houston, TX 77091

  • St. John Lutheran Church, 529 N. Holland, Bellville, TX 77418

  • American Legion Hall at 1630 Myer Rd., Sealy, TX 77474

  • Woodville United Methodist Church at 508 West Bluff St., Woodville, TX

  • Liberty County Community Center at 318 San Jacinto St., Liberty, TX 77575

  • Wharton Junior High School Gymnasium at 1120 North Rusk St., Wharton, TX, 77488

Starting Friday in Houston, all of the Comcast Xfinity wi-fi hotspots will be free to use whether you're a customer or not. The company said it is trying to help out during the flood. Non-xfinity internet customers should search for the "xfinitywifi" network name in the list of available networks and follow the on-screen prompts.  

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