Home News Retired Marine dies saving two teenagers from strong current in Texas river

Retired Marine dies saving two teenagers from strong current in Texas river


SAN ANTONIO – A retired Marine and Purple Heart recipient didn’t hesitate to jump in after two teens struggling in a strong water current. He later drowned after saving the two teens.

Authorities say it all started when a teen girl illegally walked across the damn of the of the Medina River and fell in, according to News4SA. Another teen boy jumped in to try to save her.

Marine Rodney Buentello who was visiting the park with his family, jumped in and saved both the teens, according to the Bandera Marshal Office’s Facebook page.

Buentello was not able to escape the river and was pulled under the dam. Crews were not able to reach him and the Bandera Volunteer Fire Department recovered his body down river.


The Bandera Marshal plans on pressing charges against the teen girl who violated the city ordinance for walking across the dam.



Rodney Buentello Facebook
Rodney Buentello, photo: Facebook
Buentello posted a picture of his Marine uniform on Facebook.
Buentello posted a picture of his Marine uniform on Facebook.

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  1. I would like to recommend MSgt Buentello for the Navy-Marines Corps Medal, Posthumously. His actions clearly display his lack of regard for his own safety in rescuing these two teenagers.

    John Harris
    Old Marine Sergeant

  2. “His Lord said unto him, Well done good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things ,I will make thee ruler over many things; I will make ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy Lord”

  3. Served with Rodney in the beginning years of our Fleet Marine Force days, and considered him my brother from another mother….such a deep tragic loss leaving behind his family and close friends who loved him so dearly.

    Rodney Buentello is, and will always be a true Hero in every sense of the word…his life was true selfless service, always giving to others till his last breath…

    …never above you, never below you, always beside you… fair winds and following seas….RIP my dear friend.

    CPL E. Avila

  4. The Sgt. deserves another purple for his bravery risking his life ago above and beyond the of duty again! Truly an AMERICAN HERO again! GOD bless hos family during their time of grief!

  5. What a waste of a fine man. How sad his children will not grow up without their father and his wife without her husband.
    All for two stupid irresponsible teenagers who did not obey the law . They did not deserve this man’s sacrifice!!!!! Doubtful they will ever amount to anything.

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