More than a week after an Indian family went missing in US, their SUV that had fallen into a rain-swollen Northern California river has been found with two bodies inside, authorities said on Monday, as per a report in the New York Post.
The Mendocino County Sheriff’s Office said in a statement that they have found the bodies of 41-year-old Sandeep Thottapilly and 9-year-old Saachi Thottapilly after searchers located the SUV on Sunday in the Eel River.
The body of an adult female that was found in the river last Friday has been identified as 38-year-old Soumya Thottapilly, the statement said.
12-year-old Sidhhant Thottapilly, who is the couple’s son, had been missing initally but his body was recovered at around 4pm on Monday.
A team of more than 20 searchers discovered the car lying submerged between 4 and 6 feet of water and found the bodies inside the vehicle, the sheriff’s office said.
The family was on a road trip to Portland, Oregon and coming back to their home in California, when they went missing.
They were reported missing on April 8 when they failed to show up for a visit at their relatives place in San Jose.
Sandeep was a Vice-President at Union Bank, while Soumya was a stay-at-home parent. His parents are based out of Surat, in Gujarat, while Soumya’s family stays in Kochi.
Sandeep and family was in a maroon Honda Pilot with a California registration plate (7MMX138) and had last got in touch with their family in Surat on April 5. Earlier, speaking to TNM, Sandeep's paternal aunt, who also lives in Surat, had said that the couple’s friends and relatives had launched a search operation to find the family.
"We believe that the law enforcement agencies are looking for Sandeep and family, but they haven't communicated anything to us till now. His friends in the US are also searching for him. Sandeep's brother, Sachin, who lives in Canada, is now in California to help with the search operations," she had said.
Sandeep’s family had appealed for help on social media in a bid to find their son and his family.