By Gabriel Monte A-J Media
Cecilio Gonzalez III reportedly was a police officer in Manhattan when the World Trade Center was attacked.
The father of a Fort Worth man who died from injuries he suffered after a deadly Feb. 4 traffic accident said he is heartbroken but proud of his son.
Cecilio Gonzalez III, 44, died Feb. 28 at University Medical Center, according to his father, Cecilio Gonzalez II.
The younger Gonzalez was the second fatality related to a wreck north of Post caused by slick roads. Gonzalez and three other people, including the chief deputy of the Garza County Sheriff’s Office, stopped to help the driver of a box truck that skidded off the roadway on U.S. 84.
As the men came to the driver’s aid, another truck jackknifed on the icy roads and hit them. Donald Medley, 46, of Snyder was pronounced dead at scene, according to Texas Department of Public Safety officials.
Cecilio Gonzalez II, said he was by his son at University Medical Center as he struggled to survive his injuries, which included a broken pelvis and legs and internal injuries.
“It hurts me a lot. It breaks my heart and my soul that he had to go and die that way,” he said. “But he did it with the principle believing that helping somebody else was his priority.”
UMC spokesman Eric Finley said the other patients have since been discharged.
Cecilio Gonzalez II said he wasn’t surprised to hear his son was one of three people who came to the driver’s aid.
“I call my son the unsung hero because he dedicated his younger life to help other people,” he said.
He said his son followed in his footsteps and served as a police officer in New York City. The younger Gonzalez was one of the thousands of police officers who responded to the World Trade Center during the 9/11 attacks.
Gonzalez said his son was a police officer there for 10 years before he moved to Fort Worth about three years ago, where he married and worked as a truck driver.
“He was downtown in Manhattan close to the area with the World Trade Center (was attacked),” he said.
He said his son was a quiet person who respected people.
Cecilio Gonzalez III leaves behind a wife and three children.
“He was a responsible father, a responsible son, a very quiet person,” he said. “He cared for people. That’s the way that we raised him and my children — to care for people.”
A wake for Cecilio Gonzalez III is set for 6 to 8 p.m. Friday, March 14, at Shekinah Youth Church of Allen AME Cathedral at 111-54 Merrick Blvd., Jamaica, New York. Funeral services will be held the next day.