Just so we never forget … it was 16 years ago today a massive section of the Queen Isabella Memorial Causeway collapsed when it was struck by barges loaded with steel.

Just so we never forget … it was 16 years ago today a massive section of the Queen Isabella Memorial Causeway collapsed when it was struck by barges loaded with steel.

It was just after 2 a.m. on Sept. 15, 2001 and just four days after the Sept. 11 attacks on the United States.

Eight people lost their lives when their cars plunged into the dark waters of the Laguna Madre.

They were Robert “Bob” Harris, Hector Martinez Jr., “Harpoon” Barry Welch and Chelsea Welch, all of Port Isabel; Robin Leavell of Mercedes, Julio Mireles of Los Fresnos and Stevan Francisco Rivas of Humble. Gaspar S. Hinojosa of Kingsville managed to climb out of his car afterward but died en route to the hospital.

The causeway reopened on Nov. 21, 2001, with several safety features, including a fiber-optic driver-warning system.