The family of Deep Ellum’s “cotton candy man,” who died during February’s winter storm, is suing the Electric Reliability Council of Texas and Oncor for negligence in failing to keep the power on, the Dallas Morning News reported.

Leobardo Torres Sanchez was found dead Feb. 23 in an Old East Dallas room he rented. When he hadn’t been heard from in days, his daughter in Mexico asked her followers on Facebook for information. A family friend went to check on him and found him piled under quilts in an armchair. Nearby were two heaters that had stopped working because of power outages, according to the Morning News.

Torres was one of four million Texans who lost power during the winter storm and one of 111 people who died as a result, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.

The lawsuit filed March 16 in Dallas County district court names the plaintiffs as his wife Rosa Leon Chavez and his daughter Miriam Torres Leon. It states that Torres’ death was directly related to ERCOT and Oncor’s negligence and that the defendants did not communicate with customers about possible power outages. Torres’ family is suing for $1 million in damages for death-related expenses and lack of financial support, the Morning News reported.

His remains were repatriated back to Mexico, and his family laid him to rest Friday, according to the newspaper.

Torres was a fixture in Deep Ellum for nearly 10 years, and he could be found walking the streets with the crowd, peddling his sugary wares as a late-night snack.


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