Business leader Hurwitz killed in Austin boat crash

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A boating accident on Lake Austin left two people dead including the owner of MAXXAM Inc., leaving close friends and relatives in shock. The company also controls half the ownership rights of Sam Houston Race Park.

Officers began the investigation at the scene of the deadly boat accident at Emma Long Park in Austin where two people died after the boat, which was carrying five people in all, crashed into a concrete barge.

"At the time of the crash, it was very dark out here so we don't know exactly what played a role in this collision,” Officer Marcus Davis with the Austin Police Department said.

Close friends say 49-year-old Shawn Hurwitz, a prominent Houston-based business and community leader, died at the scene. Police say another person was taken by medical helicopter to a nearby hospital but died later.

“We do know that one person was wearing a life jacket. They are not required to wear them but required to have them on their vessel,” Officer Davis said.

J. Kent Friedman, a close friend to the Hurwitz family, released the following statement:

At this time and with heavy hearts we can confirm that Shawn Hurwitz passed away last night in an incident on Lake Austin.  We don't have a lot of details at this time and ask for a degree of privacy as
his loving family and friends mourn this tragic loss.

Shawn Hurwitz's generous spirit and huge heart touched so many people over the years that this news will be devastating to people across the state and nation.

We will share more information about the incident, services and remembrance as is appropriate and it becomes known to us.

Please keep the Hurwitz family and the families of the others involved
in the accident in your hearts and prayers in the days ahead.

Another family friend says that unfortunately Hurwitz’s wife and parents were out of the country at the time of the accident and are on their way back home.