Perez and Loewen

Tyler Loewen sat in a patrol cruiser with his grandfather, Sgt. Ruben Perez, in this undated file photo. Loewen was sworn in as a Reedley police officer on May 1, but had a ceremonial swearing in at Clovis Community Medical Center where Perez was hospitalized. Perez died on May 15.

The Reedley Police Department lost one of its longtime law enforcement veterans last week, when retired police Sgt. Ruben Perez died at 73 on May 15. Perez worked in law enforcement for more than 30 years – 29 of them with the Reedley Police Department as a police dispatcher (1973-1975) and officer (starting in 1975) – before retiring as a police sergeant in 2002.

Perez was the first of what’s now three generations of law enforcement. His oldest son, Joey retired from the Fresno Police Department as an officer and served as an officer before that in Madera.

“I have been friends with the family for over 35 years,” said Joe Garza, Reedley’s police chief. “His son Joey and I were in the Police Explorers when we were 15 years old and have remained friends ever since.”

The third generation of law enforcement began earlier this month when Tyson Loewen, Ruben’s grandson, joined Reedley PD as a sworn officer on May 1. In what was a moving tribute just a day earlier, Loewen was ceremonially sworn in as an officer at Clovis Community Medical Center where Perez was hospitalized.

“Since Ruben was not able to attend the swearing in ceremony as he was at the hospital we took the swearing in to him,” Garza said. “Ruben was able to witness Tyson be sworn in and continue the legacy of police service the Perez family has established.”

Garza said that Perez’s death fell during National Peace Officers Week, which is dedicated to honoring those who made the ultimate sacrifice to their communities and their country.

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