Sergeant Steve Perez is being celebrated for his heroism in the line of duty. The 60-year-old died while trying to help victims of Hurricane Harvey.
His wife begged him to stay home due to safety concerns but he said these last words, "I've got work to do."
The 34-year veteran with the Houston Police Department drowned in his squad car as he reported for duty on Sunday morning. As ABC 13 shares, Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo said Perez drove for about two and a half hours trying to get to his station. Due to the heavy rains and flooding, he called his command that he could not get there. He then followed protocol and headed to a second station.
His body was eventually found at 8 a.m. on Tuesday.
"Every day we ask men and women to show up in good and bad conditions. Today I simply say our heart is saddened," said Acevedo. "Steve is one of the sweetest people I've ever met."
Perez leaves behind a wife as well as a son and daughter.
Hurricane Harvey has devastated the Houston area. As of this morning, water rescues continue and highways are reported to be still flooded. Fire Chief Samuel Pena said Tuesday that the department had responded to 2,100 incidents in 18 hours including 763 water rescues.
[Photo: Houston Police Department]