The three victims found Wednesday -- identified as Brady Brown, 49, his uncle Eddie Cobb Jr., 68, and Ella Williams, 52 -- apparently drowned after their car ran off a nearby highway and into the Tensas River, the Columbia newspaper The State reported.
Police said the three had traveled from Texas to Columbia to attend a funeral, then headed to Shreveport, La., on Jan. 7. They were last heard from sometime that day when one of them made a phone call near Birmingham, Ala., police said.
Louisiana State Police officers searching for the victims' car by air earlier this week saw the bumper floating in the river and crews started working to pull the car from the water, police said.
Trooper Albert Paxton said it was still unclear how the car ended up in the river