The Catch-up: The heartbreaking story behind tragic photo of father and daughter who died trying to reach US


What happened?

A photo of a father and daughter lying dead in shallow water after they drowned trying to reach the US has shone new light on the migration crisis at the US border. Óscar Ramírez and his daughter Valeria died as they tried to cross the Rio Grande from Mexico to America. The shocking picture shows Valeria tucked inside her father’s shirt and with her arm wrapped around her father's shoulders, suggesting she died clinging onto him.

The story behind the picture

The photo was taken by Julia Le Duc, a journalist in Mexico, who revealed what happened in the hours before the tragedy.

Mr Ramírez, who was from El Salvador and had been in Mexico for two months, was frustrated he was unable to present his family to US authorities in order to request asylum. Unable to stand the wait facing him, he swam across the river to Texas with his young daughter.

He set her on the US bank of the river and started back for his wife, Tania, but seeing him move away the terrified girl threw herself into the water behind him. Martínez returned and was able to grab Valeria, but the current swept them both away. The rescue services were called but it was dark and they were unable to find the two. Their bodies were discovered by firemen the following morning.

283 migrants died last year trying to cross the border from Mexico into the US. Donald Trump has made reducing the number of migrants crossing the border a key rallying cry for supporters.

Read more:

'Trump is responsible': Democratic candidates blame US policy after tragic photo emerges (The Guardian)

Outrage as dad and daughter's bodies found face down in border river (Sky News)

Inside story behind photo of drowned father and his daughter(Yahoo News UK)

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