Tex. game warden drowns

Officer Down: Warden Teyran "Ty" Patterson - [Fort Worth, Texas]


Biographical Info

 Age: 28

Cause of Death: Drowned

Additional Information:  Warden Ty Patterson had served with the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department for 2 years. He is survived by his parents.

Incident Details: Warden Patterson drowned while he and his partner attempted to recover the body of a previous drowning victim from the Paluxy River when their boat capsized.

His partner suffered near-drowning injuries while attempting to rescue Warden Patterson. Both wardens were transported to a hospital in Fort Worth, where Warden Patterson was pronounced dead.

End of Watch: May 30, 2007

By John MacCormack
San Antonio Express-News

SAN ANTONIO, Tex. — A Texas game warden from Seguin drowned Wednesday in a high water search and rescue operation after his boat capsized on the Paluxy River near Glen Rose, northwest of Waco.

Teyran "Ty" Patterson, 28, who had become a warden two years ago, was stationed in Johnson County. He became the 17th Texas game warden to die in the line of duty since 1919. 
His partner Danny Tuggle, a 25-year veteran, was airlifted to a Houston hospital, where he was listed in good condition late Wednesday.

The incident occurred as the pair tried to recover the body of a 17-year-old suspected drowning victim. It is unclear if they were wearing life preservers, according to a spokesman for Texas Parks & Wildlife. The agency is investigating.

"Ty died doing what he loved. He died serving a Texas family dealing with it's own tragic loss," said Col. Pete Flores, a Texas Parks and Wildlife law enforcement director.

"We are going to miss this courageous young game warden, and our hearts and prayers go out to his parents and loved ones," he said.

Patterson was the son of Viann and Joe Patterson of Seguin.

He was star running back at Seguin High School and later graduated from Texas State University in San Marcos with a degree in criminal justice. Before attending the Texas Game Warden Academy, he worked for the Seguin Police Department as a dispatcher.

When Denera Garcia, a supervisory dispatcher who trained Patterson, heard he had died in the line of duty, she said she thought back on his obvious passion for public service.

"He always liked to help everyone, and that's how he went," she said.

Patterson was also well known at "Seguin Fitness," a gym where he worked out for years when he lived in Seguin.

"He was a big guy, a little over 6 foot and about 240, and hard," said gym owner Gary Pendergrass, who said Patterson's personality was just the opposite. "He was a real nice kid. Very polite. One of those soft-spoken strong guys."

Copyright 2007 San Antonio Express-News

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