Lost driver drowns in Hillsborough River

TAMPA - In the pouring-down rain and lost, Migdalia Mendoza, 51, died after she took a wrong turn and drove down the Lowry Park Boat Ramp into the Hillsborough River, according to Tampa Police.

Mendoza was lost, and on the phone with a friend, trying to find her way to a church function.  The friend was trying to help her get there, when she ended up in the water, and said she needed help.

Someone across the river heard a noise and ran outside.  He called 911 and said he thought there was a van in the river.

The first two officers on the scene attempted a rescue, but the car was already submerged.  The dive team arrived, pulled Mendoza from the vehicle, and Tampa Fire Rescue crews attempted to revive her, but it was too late.

Mendoza was taken to St. Joseph's Hospital where she was pronounced dead.

Print this article Back to Top

Comments