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Watch out for sudden snow melt

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May 24, 2005 06:52PM
Creek death prompts snowmelt warnings
Staff Writer

Tuesday, May 24, 2005 - The death of a 6-year-old boy who was swept into Mill Creek in Forest Falls on Sunday has prompted warnings of the dangers the creek possesses as heavy snowpack begins to melt and send chilling water rushing down the mountain.

Less than 5 inches of water racing across a concrete walkway in the 41000 block of Valley of the Falls Drive caused Cesar Gonzalez Reyes of Forest Falls to slip and fall into the creek about 7:45 p.m. Sunday, sheriff's officials said Monday.

The 20-mph current swept Cesar 1 3/4 miles downstream, said Deputy Shannon Kovich, coordinator of the San Bernardino County sheriff's San Gorgonio and Valley of the Falls search-and-rescue teams.

Cesar's aunt, Patricia Burbano, found him submerged in the water about 9:20 p.m., his clothing shredded by debris and rocks. He suffered major head trauma, Kovich said.

The boy was flown to Loma Linda University Medical Center, where he died at 10:42 p.m., coroner's officials said.

An autopsy will determine the cause of death.

Cesar's death marked the tragic end to a perilous weekend in the area of Mill Creek between Forest Falls and Mountain Home Village.

On Sunday, rushing water swept a 7-year-old boy into the creek as he tried to cross it. The boy's mother came to his aid and managed to get her son to the other side, Kovich said.

Firefighters, however, had to lay a ladder across the creek, elevated above the water, to enable the two to return to the other side, Kovich said.



Watch out for sudden snow melt

katrina island 2540May 24, 2005 06:52PM

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