ATHENS, Texas (KLTV) - A Texas DPS trooper who died after being shot in the line of duty once worked in East Texas.
Trooper Chad Walker died Wednesday after being shot near Mexia on Friday, March 26. For two East Texas law enforcement agencies, the news of Walker’s death means they’ve lost one of their own.
Before he hit the highways of Central Texas as a state trooper, Walker patrolled the streets of Athens and Henderson County.
“He was just one of the best Texas peace officers I’ve ever met,” said Botie Hillhouse, Henderson County Sheriff.
Hillhouse first met Walker when he came to the Athens Police Department at the age of 21 in 2003. Walker worked as an Athens police officer for more than seven years before going to the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office.
“I first met him when he was an Athens police officer,” Hillhouse said. “And then he eventually came to work here at the sheriff’s office. I got to spend a lot of time with him working cases. And, you know, just doing what he loved to do.”
Hillhouse says Walker always brought a smile, and never met a stranger.
“Chad was doing exactly what he loved to do,” he said. “He was a true servant. He enjoyed everything. Me and him had a lot of conversations. He had bigger goals.”
Bigger goals like one day becoming sheriff, Hillhouse said.
“He wanted to be a sheriff one day, and like you said earlier, I wasn’t sheriff when he met, but he and I had a lot of conversations about being a sheriff,” Hillhouse said.
After his work in East Texas, Walker joined DPS in 2015 at a state trooper. He was stationed in his hometown of Groesbeck, Texas.
“He stayed in touch with a lot of people,” Hillhouse said. “We all still love him and will do everything we can to support him and his family.”
Hillhouse says members of the Henderson County Sheriff’s Office and Athens Police plan to attend Walker’s funeral.