'A tragic situation': Missing California mom, 7-year-old boy found dead after toddler reports them missing

Monterey County, Calif. – A California mother and her 7-year-old son were found dead last week after the woman's 3-year-old child had reported them missing, police said.

Authorities were alerted to the missing pair shortly after 7:45 p.m. Wednesday, when a 3-year-old boy told a "good Samaritan" that his mother was missing, the U.S. Coast Guard said in a statement.

Firefighters found the boy's mother, identified as Florencia Ramirez-Urbano, a short time later near a boat launch in Moss Landing, about 20 miles north of Monterey County, authorities said.

Ramirez was taken to a hospital and later pronounced dead, according to the Monterey County Sheriff's Office.


Investigators then discovered the woman had another child – a 7-year-old boy – who was also missing.

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Coast Guard crews searched for the boy on Thursday and Friday before discovering his body on Saturday.

Authorities haven't confirmed how Ramirez and her son ended up in the water but said the boy may have started to drown and his mother jumped in to help, SFGATE reported.

"This is a tragic situation," wrote Pasculli, Monterey County spokesman, in an email Monday.

Saleen Martin is a reporter on USA TODAY's NOW team. She is from Norfolk, Virginia the 757 and loves all things horror, witches, Christmas, and food. Follow her on Twitter at @Saleen_Martin or email her at

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: California mother, 7 year old son found dead in apparent drowning