Tragic Oscar Alberto Martinez Ramirez and his daughter Valeria were attempting to make the illegal crossing in search of a better life – but paid the ultimate price.
He was found dead on the river bank with his 23-month-old daughter tucked into his t-shirt.
The pair reportedly perished in front of the girl’s mum and Oscar’s wife Tania Vanessa Avalos.
Tania told Mexican authorities she watched her beloved husband and child disappear in strong currents on Sunday.
The family arrived last weekend in the border city of Matamoros, Mexico, and planned to apply for asylum in the US, the New York Times reports.
However, the international bridge was closed and they decided to try to swim over the river to Brownsville, Texas, with their tiny daughter.
Dad Oscar swam across first with Valeria on his back and tucked under his shirt and Tania followed on the back of a family friend.
According to Tina’s account, the water was rough and as her husband approached the US side of the river he began to tire.
Luckily she managed to swim back to the Mexican side of the river but was forced to watch on as her husband and daughter began to sink and were swept away.
Mexican authorities found their bodies on Monday close to where they were last seen alive.
Oscar’s mother has now told how she begged her son “not to pursue the American dream” before he set off with his new family on the perilous 1,400-mile journey from their home country.
The farther reportedly hoped to find a job to support his family and buy a house, his mum said.
Shortly after the image was released, the acting head of US Customs and Border Protection announced he was resigning.
There is ongoing scrutiny of conditions in holding centers along the border, with reports of young people kept in poor and inhumane conditions at one of the agency’s stations in Texas.
In a message to employees, John Sanders said he would step down on July 5 but did not give a reason for leaving.
Six children have died since September after being detained by border agents and some have blamed the policies of President Donald Trump.
“Although I will leave it to you to determine whether I was successful, I can unequivocally say that helping support the amazing men and women of CBP has been the most fulfilling and satisfying opportunity of my career,” he said.