‘I heard rushing water’: Girlfriend of Waverly drowning victim recalls final conversation

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Joshua Hendrix (Courtesy: Marlana McIntosh)

WAVERLY, Tenn. (WKRN) — A 35-year-old man who was washed away by flood waters in Waverly over the weekend died while trying to search for his missing nephew, according to his girlfriend.

Joshua Hendrix had recently moved to Murray, Kentucky with his girlfriend, Marlana McIntosh, but was still commuting to work at the Dan Post warehouse in Waverly.

McIntosh told News 2 that Hendrix called her from work Saturday morning, as the flash flooding began in Humphreys County.

“He said, ‘my brother’s son is missing, and the water had took away their home and everything’ and he wanted to go out searching for his nephew,” she recalled.

The conversation continued: “‘It’s raining pretty bad here. I’m gonna try to make it to my grandma’s house.’ And the last thing I heard was, ‘Oh crap, my car. My car’s stuck…’ and then I heard rushing water. That’s all I heard.”

McIntosh said she thought Hendrix had gotten his car stuck in water, but she dropped her children with her mother, and drove from Murray to Waverly to find him.

“You could tell when you got there, you couldn’t go across the roads to get into Waverly because the bridges had been washed out,” she explained.

McIntosh said she and friends searched the entire day for Hendrix, until it began raining again. They woke up the next morning at 5 a.m. and continued to search.

When McIntosh located Hendrix’s abandoned vehicle, she said, “I saw his car keys still in his ignition. The ignition still turned on. No power, no nothing. I took the car keys out and fell into the seat and started crying, because it’s not like him.”

“I took those car keys out and I put them to my heart, and I prayed to God. I said, ‘God, if he’s out there, if he’s alive, find him. If he’s deceased, find him. Just bring him to where we can have peace.'”

McIntosh said she later got a call from Hendrix’s aunt, who said his body had been found. She went to the hospital, where she had a chance to say her final goodbye.

“He looked like he was sleeping, just like he did when he was home with us,” she said.

Hendrix, who McIntosh described as a “Godly person,” was wearing the cross necklace she had bought him for his birthday.

“If you knew him, you would know where he is right now,” she said. “There’s no doubt in my mind that he’s up there and he’s singing and he’s looking down on all of us and he’s saying, ‘you know what, I’m OK.'”

Visitation for Hendrix will begin at 10 a.m. Saturday at Humphreys County Funeral Home. His funeral will follow at 1 p.m.

Hendrix was one of 20 people killed in the catastrophic flash flooding in Humphreys County over the weekend.

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