Carolina, Puerto Rico – Puerto Rico Police Department (PRPD) Sergeant Edwin Maldonado-Garcia died in the line of duty on July 19 while trying to rescue a kitten from the middle of a highway.
The 56-year-old sergeant was in uniform and on his way to work when the incident occurred, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
Sgt. Maldonado-Garcia was driving along the Baldorioty de Castro Expressway near Isla Verde at approximately 8:15 a.m. when he spotted a group of citizens trying to rescue a kitten from the middle of the roadway.
The veteran officer pulled over and exited his vehicle, then went to go help the group with their rescue attempt, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
As he was trying to grab the kitten up off of the highway, an oncoming car slammed into him.
Sgt. Maldonado-Garcia died as a result of his injuries, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
No other information about the deadly crash was immediately available.
Sgt. Maldonado-Garcia served the PRPD for 37 years, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
He was assigned to the agency’s Internal Security Division at the time of his death.
The longtime lawman leaves behind his wife and his child, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page.
Dozens of people offered their condolences to Sgt. Maldonado-Garcia’s loved ones in response to the announcement of his line-of-duty death.
“I worked and personally knew Sgto. Maldonado and he was a great coworker and excellent human being,” fellow PRPD Sergeant Mata Fontanez wrote. “He was always in a positive mood and always gave a lending hand to anyone who needed his help. He always kept in touch with his peers and answered his phone, no matter the time.”
“My condolences to his wife Lizzy and his son, may the Lord fill them with strength and peace so they may endure this pain,” Sgt. Fontanez continued. “His loss has hit hard in the PRPD, friends and family, he will be missed dearly by many.”
“Rest In Peace Sergeant Edwin Maldonado-García! Thank you for your 37 years of service with the Puerto Rico Police Department, in Puerto Rico,” another message read. “We thank you for your devotion and your sacrifices, and also to your family and friends for their sacrifices. Our hearts break for your wife, your child and your friends during this terrible tragedy, and we want them to know that you will never be forgotten! Our thoughts and Prayers also go out to all of your sisters and brothers in Blue that protect us.”
RIP. Puerto Rico Sergeant Edwin Maldonado-Garcìa was killed when he was struck by a vehicle while attempting to rescue a kitten from the middle of a highway. #rip #hero #eow #SergeantEdwinMaldonadoGarcia #PuertoRicoPoliceDepartment #thinblueline #bluelivesmatter #BackTheBlue pic.twitter.com/hooisS6yqB
— Protecting the Blue (@protectingblue) July 21, 2023
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family, friends, and colleagues of Sergeant Edwin Maldonado-Garcia of the Puerto Rico Police Department. On July 19, Sgt. Maldonado-Garcia was hit and killed by a vehicle as he provided assistance to several citizens. @PRPDNoticias @TheIACP pic.twitter.com/JFeAktLyij
— U. S. Marshals Survivors Benefit Fund (@USMarshalsFund) July 21, 2023
Rest In Peace: Sergeant Edwin Maldonado-García. Puerto Rico Police Department, PR. E.O.W: Wednesday, July 19, 2023. @PoliciasPR @PoliceOne @ODMP #BlueLivesMatter #officerdown pic.twitter.com/hYYXTdbu2Q
— R Cook (@retiredNCSHP) July 22, 2023
Our thoughts and prayers are with the family of Puerto Rico Police Department Sergeant Edwin Maldonado-Garcia, both blood and blue. Thank you for your service.
Rest easy, hero. We’ll hold the line from here.