Philadelphia Authorities Discovered a Body in the River, Strongly Suspected to Be of a Missing 2-year-old Girl
Image Source: NBC10 Philadelphia

Philadelphia Authorities Discovered a Body in the River, Strongly Suspected to Be of a Missing 2-year-old Girl

In a heart-breaking incident that has left a community devastated, the body of a young girl was found in the Delaware River near Philadelphia’s wastewater treatment plant. 

It has been strongly believed by the authorities that the victim was 2-year-old Matilda Sheils, who, along with her 9-month-old brother, Conrad, was tragically swept away during the floodwaters that hit Bucks County a week ago. The siblings had gone missing after the flood took the life of their mother, 32-year-old Katheryn Seley.

The observation was made on Friday evening when 911 callers reported the presence of the child’s body after 5 p.m. as confirmed by the Upper Makefield Fire Chief, Tim Brewer, in a press conference. 

“Based on the physical description of the child and the clothing found on the child, we strongly believe that 2-year-old Mattie Sheils has been found,” Brewer said at a news conference.

The incident took place a week prior when the region experienced relentless rain and flooding. The family’s vehicle was among several others stranded in floodwaters in Washington Crossing. Tragically, the father managed to save a 4-year-old boy, while Matilda and Conrad’s mother and grandmother bravely attempted to rescue the two young children. However, they were all tragically swept away by the fierce currents, with only the grandmother surviving.

The entire community, along with rescue workers, has been on edge, praying for a miracle and hoping for the safe return of both children. The discovery of Matilda’s body has been a devastating blow, leaving everyone filled with grief and sadness. Chief Brewer extended his heartfelt sympathies to the family, acknowledging that their pain must be immeasurable. 

“We cannot begin to fathom the pain that they are experiencing,” Brewer said.

Even as the family mourns the loss of Matilda, they hold onto hope for the return of her 9-month-old brother, Conrad. 

“We are grateful that our little Mattie has been brought home to us. We are still praying for the return of Conrad,” the family said in a statement posted Saturday by Upper Makefield Township police.

Family members also stated “continued gratitude for the overwhelming outpouring of love, support, and concern from the community and from people around the country as rescue workers have worked tirelessly to find Mattie and Conrad.”

The search efforts continue, with Philadelphia police aviation and marine units tirelessly combing the river in the hope of finding the young boy.

The magnitude of the floods that struck Bucks County was too high, with 11 vehicles being engulfed by the raging waters. In less than an hour, the area alongside the Delaware River was hit with as much as 7 inches of rain. 

The floods claimed the lives of Matilda and Conrad’s mother, Katheryn Seley, along with four other individuals, identified as Enzo Depiero (78), Linda Depiero (74), Yuko Love (64), and Susan Barnhart (53).

As the search for Conrad continues, the community remains united, determined to bring him back to safety. 

With more than two years of expertise in news and analysis, Eileen Stewart is a seasoned reporter. Eileen is a respected voice in this field, well-known for her sharp reporting and insightful analysis. Her writing covers a wide range of subjects, from politics to culture and more.