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At least 9 dead, 1 still missing in Arizona flash flood

The entrance sign to the Water Wheel recreation area points the the waters where victims were caught in a flash flood along the banks of the East Verde River Monday, July 17, 2017, in Payson, Ariz. The bodies of several children and adults have been found after Saturday’s flash flooding poured over a popular swimming area in the Tonto National Forest. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

At least 9 dead, 1 still missing in Arizona flash flood

The family of an Arizona man who went missing after a deadly weekend flash flood is holding on to hope for his safe return.

Hector Garnica, 27, disappeared Saturday after torrential rains flooded the Cold Springs swimming hole in the town of Payson, Arizona, where he and his family were celebrating his wife’s birthday.

The trip turned deadly when Garnica’s wife, Maria Garnica, and their three children, Danny, 7, Mia, 5, and Emily, 3, were carried away and killed in the flood. Five other members of the family were also killed, and four people were rescued.

Rescue teams have been urgently looking for Garnica via air and ground searches since the incident happened. Authorities hadn’t announced any leads as of early Tuesday morning, but Hector Garnica’s family said they are optimistic.

“He has to be found, they can’t stop looking until he is found,” his sister, Carla Garnica, told ABC affiliate KNXV on Tuesday. (AP)

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