GILBERT CORTEZ

GILBERT CORTEZ

California Department of Corrections Sergeant Gilbert Cortez, 46, and his K9, Mattie, died March 25th in an automobile accident in San Diego County.

Sergeant Cortez was part of a convoy of state corrections K9 officers who were en route to inspect the La Cima Fire Camp in a rural part of the county. His marked vehicle veered off the roadway and overturned, killing K9 Mattie. Sergeant Cotez was transported to a local fire station but died before a helicopter could reach him.

Sergeant Cortez had served with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation for 23 years and was assigned to the Southern Regional K-9 Unit.

He is survived by his wife and two children.