EAGLE PASS, Texas —”From the moment a person leaves their home, they need to understand they are in harm’s way,” Chief Patrol Agent for the Del Rio Sector of the Border Patrol, Jason Owens warned anyone crossing the border illegally.

Chief Patrol Agent Owens delivered a message and addressed several topics at a recent media event. 

“We have seen people from more than 115 countries cross the border illegally in the Del Rio sector this year,” Owens said.

Another message Owens shared was straightforward: migrants who try to cross the border illegally are in danger. 

“We’ve already had over 170 people die in this sector alone trying to make this journey,” Owens said.

The Del Rio Sector covers more than 55,000 square miles of Texas and 47 counties. Chief Owens says there is an unlimited number of obstacles for migrants trying to come to the U.S. 

“Extreme heat, arid desert, dangerous animals, and all the while being in the hands of criminal smugglers and cartels who care nothing for them for our communities or anyone except making money,” Owens said.

This event was an interactive one. Those in attendance got to experience firsthand some of the situations migrants face.  This event was also meant to spread awareness about what the agents go through. 

“The men and women that put on the uniform, are the ones that each and every day go out and rescue people in these conditions and sometimes when we’re not able to get there in time we are the ones that recover the bodies from the river, we are the ones that find the bodies in the desert burned beyond recognition, we are the ones that pull people from tractor trailers that are clinging to life, make no mistake it impacts us on a very personal level,” Owens said.