5-year-old student dies in hot car in elementary school parking lot in the Rio Grande Valley, district officials say

Boy was found in a vehicle that belonged to a staff member, who was also a relative

La Joya ISD Press Conference 8/26/2022 (La Joya ISD)

MISSION, Texas – A child died Thursday after being left in a hot car in the parking lot of Dr. Americo Paredes Elementary in the Rio Grande Valley community of Mission.

La Joya Independent School District Chief of Police Raul Gonzalez said the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office received a call at 4:04 p.m. for an unresponsive 5-year-old boy.

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Gonzalez said the boy was found in a vehicle that belonged to a staff member of the elementary school and that the boy was related to that staff member.

The boy was taken to the nurse’s office where responding officials attempted CPR but efforts to resuscitate the child were unsuccessful.

“I ask the community to keep the family, our students and our staff at Americo Paredes Elementary in their thoughts and their prayers as they navigate through this tragic event,” Superintendent of Schools Gisela Saenz said during a press conference Friday.

Saenz also confirmed that the child was a student at the school.

She called the death an isolated incident and said grief counselors will be made available for students and staff.

Gonzales said law enforcement isn’t providing further details due to an ongoing investigation.

Americo Paredes Elementary is located at 5301 N. Bentsen Palm Drive.