WIMBERLEY, Texas - A handful of volunteers trudged along the muddy and brush-filled banks of the Blanco River in Central Texas, searching for a group of people still missing days after the vacation house where they were staying was swept away in a massive flood.
A soggy teddy bear caught in a tree provided a stark reminder that children were among the missing. The volunteers, led by Toby Baker, a commissioner with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, marked where the bear was found. They talked about the pajamas the children were wearing the night the river crested.
Baker had come in an unofficial capacity, as a childhood friend of one of the missing. "I've got a young family," he said Friday. "I'd like to think someone would come out and do the same for us."
At least 29 people have been killed in storms that began pummeling Texas and Oklahoma over Memorial Day weekend. Twenty-five of the deaths have been in Texas alone, and 11 people were still missing early Saturday. Rivers and lakes around Houston, San Antonio, and Dallas have all swelled - and the flooding may not let up, with forecasters predicting more rain this weekend.
Hays County officials said in a statement that a search team recovered a woman's body Saturday afternoon near the Blanco River in the Wimberley area.
It was the second body recovered Saturday along the river. Earlier in the day, a search team recovered a woman's body between Wimberley and San Marcos.
Autopsies will be needed to identify both women. County officials say it's not known if the two bodies and that of a man recovered Thursday are any of the six people still listed as missing in Hays County from the flood.
A church in Wimberley, a small tourist town about 20 miles northwest from where Baker's group was working, has become a meeting spot for volunteers who have come to help look for the missing in that area.
About 2,000 volunteers have come through during the week, and 100 members of an elite search and rescue team have been deployed to the area.
Storms this weekend could hamper search efforts and prompt more evacuations.
The Colorado River in Wharton and the Brazos and San Jacinto rivers near Houston were the main areas of concern as floodwaters moved from North and Central Texas downstream toward the Gulf of Mexico.