Texas deputy, 27, killed after crashing into back of 18-wheeler stopped on the highway

The 27-year-old leaves behind a wife, a 2-year-old daughter and a 5-year-old son

<p>Harris County Deputy Robert Adam Howard, who went by Adam, died Wednesday after his patrol vehicle crashed into an 18-wheeler</p>

Harris County Deputy Robert Adam Howard, who went by Adam, died Wednesday after his patrol vehicle crashed into an 18-wheeler

A community is mourning after a 27-year-old Texas sheriff’s deputy was killed in a tragic car crash with a parked 18-wheeler on a Houston-area highway, authorities said.

Harris County Sheriff’s Deputy Robert Adam Howard, a member of his department’s gang unit, was reportedly transporting evidence on Wednesday when his marked vehicle hit the back of the tractor-trailer stopped on the highway.

Images from the crash showed Howard’s patrol vehicle crumpled beside the 18-wheeler in the northbound lanes, a scene so tragic it prompted the office’s seasoned sheriff to call it “pretty horrific impact”.

“We’re devastated that we’re losing such a great teammate described as a workhorse, described as having a great personality, funny, and just outgoing,” said Sheriff Ed Gonzalez, according to ABC 13. “We have a lot of heavy hearts,” he added, lined by a row of law enforcement officials.

The 27-year-old is being remembered by his peers as being a determined leader in his unit, with one co-worker describing his work ethic as being: “The first one in the door … and the last one to leave at the end of the night”.

Robert Adam Howard, right, is seen with his wife and 2-year-old daughter and 5-year-old son

Howard’s partner, who fought back tears throughout his interview with local news affiliate ABC 13, told reporters how fortunate he felt to have had him not only as a partner, but a best friend.

“Just a phenomenal person. You know when we prayed together with the crew, you know, we had to thank the Lord for allowing us into his life. He was just one of those type of people,” said Garivey, who worked alongside Howard for the past three years and had, by his own admission, only made it out of some tough situations because of his partner.

“My little protector,” Mr Garivery said of his 6ft 5in partner. “I’ve had some terrible scenes where if it wasn’t for Howard, I wouldn’t be home with my kids.”

While transporting Howard to a nearby hospital, a second crash occurred with another HCSO deputy who was riding a motorcycle as part of the escort.

That deputy was taken to a hospital as well where they were treated for their injuries and are expected to be okay, according to the sheriff.

Howard was treated for his critical injuries at Memorial Hermann in The Woodlands but was later confirmed to have died there.

Local news station KHOU reported that Howard leaves behind a wife and two young children, a 2-year-old daughter and a 5-year-old son.

The crash remains under investigation by the HCSO and anyone with information is being asked to come forward with information.

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