Father of slain Sikh Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal mourns his son: 'I've lost my hero'

BySteve Campion via KTRK logo
Tuesday, October 1, 2019
Fallen deputy's father: 'I've lost my hero'
EMBED <>More Videos

ABC13's Steve Campion captures the words that the father of a Harris County deputy had for his son who died in an ambush shooting.

HOUSTON -- Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal touched the lives of many across the Houston community before he was taken too soon, killed in cold blood during a traffic stop Friday.

Sandeep's father, Pyara Dhaliwal, visited the memorial that has sprung up near the spot where the deputy was fatally shot. Members of the community have left messages, candles and flowers to the growing site to show their appreciation for Deputy Dhaliwal.

"I lost my hero," Pyara said of his son.

FULL VIDEO: Fallen deputy's father speaks at vigil site after son's killing

Sandeep has been described as a caring, generous officer of the law, making a difference to all those he encountered. After Sandeep's own mother died last year, Pyara said Sandeep stepped into a care-giver role for his father.

Pyara wanted to make sure everyone knows how much he appreciates the outpouring of support.

"Thank you to the sheriff's department, to the community, to the whole world for the support," Pyara said. "The honor I get from the world, from this community, is priceless. But I am missing him and I will never get him back. But he is here with me."

Sandeep's younger sister, Ranjeet Kaur, joined a crowd on Saturday and lit a candle for her brother. She remembered a man who loved his job.

"He was a really great person. He didn't deserve all this. He was a great person. He helped everybody. He never said no. He does as much a he can. I think this was the wrong time and the wrong place," said Kaur. "He had a big heart, like I said before. He helped everybody."

"He was a hero, a respected member of the community, and he was a trailblazer," Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said in a Friday afternoon press conference.

Dhaliwal made headlines in 2015 for being the first sworn law enforcement officer with the Harris County Sheriff's Office to wear a turban.

"It will give me a chance to open up the conversation," he told Eyewitness News at the time.

MORE: What to know about Sikhism, the faith of Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal

Dhaliwal leaves behind a wife and three children.