McALLEN, Texas (KVEO) – Texas’ Rio Grande Valley is mourning the loss of the two McAllen police officers who lost their lives while serving in the line of duty.
“To hear that this happened, especially to such a great individual. I know he loved to serve. That was what he did. I guess the role of a police officer is to serve,” said Oscar Riojas, the athletic director at the Weslaco Independent School District.
It’s a somber moment for Riojas, as he remembers the McAllen Police Officer Ismael Chavez. Once a science teacher and coach at Weslaco East High school.
“He was just the type of person that, he cared about what he did. He did everything 100 percent,” Riojas added holding back his tears.
Chavez and Officer Edelmiro Garza were killed during a domestic violence call Saturday afternoon. Sunday, friends rememebered them.
“That was Eddie,” said Oziel De La Cruz, a youth Pastor at Vital Church in McAllen. “Every single member of our church can identify him, can know who he is. He was so visible and again we’re just going to miss him.”
“He’s definitely a part of a teaching coaching family just an awesome, awesome individual. Just the type of person that you would want your kids to be around,” said Riojas.
De La Cruz, who was also a former dispatcher at the McAllen Police Department, said he has known Officer Garza for years and got to work with him during his time at the department.
“Fellow dispatchers, we always said when you got to work with Eddie it was going to be a fun day. He always found a way to make everybody smile to make everybody laugh,” said De La Cruz.
A commitment to serve their community is something they practiced and followed every day.
“He was a great person a great individual that just loved people and I think he chose to become a police officer because he loved people, he loved to serve people,” said De La Cruz.
While details of memorial services have yet to be released, the public has been paying their respect to the officers outside of McAllen Police Department.