Former Constable speaks out, deaths on causeway

The serene sound of the water surrounds the Laguna Madre. The Queen Isabella causeway stands high above the water. Many calling it the heart of Port Isabel. Former Constable Mike Barberena is one of the many who feels this way. "It TMs the livelihood, it TMs the blood life for the Laguna Madre area," Barberena said. The causeway is the main contributor to the economy. The two mile long Queen Isabella bridge is the only road connecting South Padre Island to the mainland. Helping to get tourists ready to spend their hard earned dollars across to the island---especially during spring break. Things haven't always been this pretty for the causeway. Just recently a suicide left its mark on the bridge. After 27 1/2 years Mike says he seen it all. "We had one accident; it was a gentleman from the coast guard with a stalled car, he opened the hood, another car hit him and he jumped off by accident, he didn TMt intend to jump off same result as Mr. Marchan," Barberena said. He said the hardest calls to take have been those of people attempting to take their lives. Mike has responded to 10 attempted suicides and one successful suicide. The one in February is the 2nd successful suicide he's heard about. "Some of these people that I TMve seen on the bridges and other places have a moment of weakness and they are not brave because they jump because they did what they did, it TMs a harder thing to strive to be alive," Barberena said. Mike who knew Ray Marchan said Marchan knew what he was doing. "He's from the area, he knew there was concrete at the bottom of the bridge when he decided to dive from the highest point," Barberena said. Click here to follow Veronica on Facebook Click here to follow Veronica on Twitter