The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) remembered and paid tribute to Texas Highway Patrol Troopers, Texas Rangers and Special Agents who lost their lives in the line of duty at today’s 2021 Peace Officers Memorial Service. Those honored included Trooper Moises Sanchez, who died in August 2019, and Trooper Chad Walker, who was killed in March 2021. The service was held at DPS Headquarters in Austin, with Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick as the guest speaker.
“Today, I am deeply humbled to speak at the 2021 Peace Officers Memorial Service,” said Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick. “Since I have been Lt. Governor, I have attended far too many funerals for our fallen officers. I stand with Texas DPS and our brave peace officers, and will continue to work diligently to better protect our Troopers as they put their lives on the line, every single day, for Texas communities.”
Since 1823, when DPS first began as the Texas Rangers, 223 DPS Officers have died in the line of duty. In the two years since DPS held its last Peace Officers Memorial Service, 512 officers nationwide were killed in the line of duty, 92 of whom were serving in Texas, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
“Not everyone has the courage and fortitude to be in law enforcement. It is a job you must be committed to 24 hours a day. It is a duty your family must be willing to serve as well,” said Texas Public Safety Commission Chairman Steven P. Mach. “Today we pay our respects to our fallen heroes, among them Trooper Moises Sanchez and Trooper Chad Walker. We are eternally grateful for everything they have done.”
During today’s ceremony, the families of Trooper Chad Walker and Trooper Moises Sanchez laid flowers on a wreath to honor them.
Trooper Walker was shot in March 2021, when he stopped to assist a stranded driver near Mexia in Limestone County, and the driver opened fire. He died from his injuries five days later.
Trooper Moises Sanchez was shot in April 2019, while trying to apprehend a driver involved in a wreck in Hidalgo County. He died from his injuries that August.
“Every day, our law enforcement officers walk into dangerous situations not knowing what the outcome may be, and they accept this as part of their role to protect and serve people in their communities,” said DPS Director Steven McCraw. “Today we remember the sacrifices of those who have given their all in the line of duty. We pay special respects to Trooper Moises Sanchez, Trooper Chad Walker and their families. These fallen heroes exemplified courage, bravery and honor, and they will never be forgotten.”
For a list and photos of fallen DPS members throughout history, visit the DPS memorial website. For information about officer deaths across the state and nation, visit the Officer Down Memorial Page.
Visit DPS’ Facebook for additional photos from the 2021 Peace Officers Memorial Service.