canada africa partner reservation Family mourns the loss of a mother who tried to save her daughter from drowning in the San Joaquin River

Family mourns the loss of a mother who tried to save her daughter from drowning in the San Joaquin River


NEWMAN – A family is without a mother this Mother’s Day weekend. The three-day search for Brenda Duran’s body ended Saturday in Newman on the San Joaquin River.

“She just looked at me with a scared look and went under the water and never came back,” said family member Felicia Guzman.

A family grieving the loss of Brenda, a mother trying to save her daughter from drowning and an older brother doing his best to help.

“I realized she was fainting, I jumped into the river, I swam to the middle, I grabbed her and came out by the time I saw I was looking for my mother to save her and she was already underwater “, she said. son and older brother Jaime Aguilar Guzman.

Both children got out of the water safely.

The search for Brenda continued for two days before the family contacted a private diver to assist in the search.

“I asked him how much it would cost you, he said I wouldn’t charge you anything,” said family member Aurora Duran.

“We found her within six hours. Just under six hours,” said diving instructor Juan Heredia, who located the body.

The family said the waters were filled with all kinds of water rescue equipment, including boats, sonar and drones. But they say in the end it just comes down to training.

“Maybe something they do every now and then, brush up on. One is having the toys, the other is knowing how to use them,” said family member Jorge Guzman Duran.

The private divers who volunteered to help also recovered a high school student missing in the Calaveras River last month.

“I have experience and I can read the water,” Heredia said.

The Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office said the specific area where she was found had not yet been searched due to order of protocol.

“No, it’s not a training problem. It just happened to be that the divers were told that this grid has not been searched, you guys can help search this grid and that’s where she happened to be, so it has nothing to do with training and at lack of a better word has a lot to do with luck. Where will she be and they just happened to find the grid where she was,” said Sgt. Veronica Esquivez with the Stanislaus County Sheriff’s Office.

The family says Brenda was a strong swimmer and wants to raise awareness of the dangers of underwater currents.

“She was always a hardworking mother. She basically gave everything for her children, even her life,” says Jorge.

The sheriff’s department is reminding people to wear life jackets and remember how fast and cold the water can be when winter’s snowpack melts.

The volunteer divers say their payment is to return a loved one to their family.