ELMA, Washington - A man is missing and feared dead after his vehicle was found on a street near the Chehalis River that was inundated by water this weekend.
According to family members, Tim Warren hasn’t been seen or heard from since he called people early Sunday morning in need of a tow. His vehicle was found, but Warren was nowhere to be seen. The person who had showed up to give him a tow told the Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office that he barely made it to/from the vehicle without being swept away himself.
"I think he probably drowned," said Marvin Warren, Tim’s Dad. "I think he got out there and felt he had to get out of the vehicle and when he got out of the vehicle he got swept away."
Warren said that Tim had his girlfriend’s cellphone on him when he went missing – it was pinged in the water nearby.
The vehicle was found on Porter Creek Road West in Elma, not far from State Route 12. Marvin Warren told FOX 13 that while the water was only ankle deep on Sunday night, it was roughly 2 feet higher when his son would have been stuck.
While the Grays Harbor County Sheriff is holding out hope that Warren simply abandoned his vehicle, his Dad tells FOX 13 that he knows his son too well to believe that. He said Tim had been living at a place just a few miles up the road in Malone with his girlfriend, and that he would have come home.
There had been hope initially that a swift-water rescue team out of Thurston County could help find, or even retrieve Warren. However, it was too late and too dark for teams to safely search when the emergency calls first came in.
The Sheriff’s Office returned with boats on Sunday morning after the sun came up, but have yet to turn up any evidence of where Warren is.
The news is especially difficult because Marvin Warren lost his wife just a few weeks ago. Glenda died of cancer.
"It’s very terrible," said Marvin Warren. "I miss his mom too. Glenda – my queen – my life is just terrible, right now."
If it turns out that Warren drowned – as family believes – it would be the second drowning death in Grays Harbor County due to the recent flooding.
Earlier this week, 72-year-old Delbert Pratt was killed on North River Road in Cosmopolis. His wife called 911 on Friday to report he went missing after he went to move his car due to flooding – his body was found trapped under his vehicle a short distance from his driveway.
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