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South Pas Remembers Officer Kevin Sandoval

Sandoval died Tuesday at a firearms training day when he fell and hit his head.

Neighboring police departments patrolled the streets of South Pas while mourned the loss of Officer Kevin Sandoval, 23, who after collapsing and hitting his head at the Burro Canyon Shooting range Tuesday. 

Sandoval, or "Sandy" as some of his peers at Rio Hondo Police Academy called him, lived in Covina but was a familiar face to the residents of South Pas. He had been an officer in the city for two years after serving as a cadet for 18 months.

With the flag hung at half staff, South Pas Watch Commander Sgt. Tony Abdalla gave a at the department Tuesday afternoon. Abdalla explained that although Sandoval was participating in a firearms training day at the time of his death, firearms were not involved in the accident. 

"We are not sure why yet, but at some point he lost consciousness, fell to the ground and hit his head," Abdalla told various news outlets.

"There are some unanswered questions that we can’t answer now due to the uncertainty and the early stages of the investigation," Police Chief Joseph Payne later said in an e-mail Tuesday night. "We hope to have more information from the medical examiner tomorrow."

Paramedics, who are members of the Pasadena Police Department's Special Weapons Team, came to Sandoval's aid, according to authorities. He was then flown to Foothill Presbyterian Hospital in Glendora where he was declared dead at about 3 p.m. 

"[Kevin] is what I would categorize as probably the best police officer that we would be fortunate as a City and community to find," said Abdalla. "He was very proactive, very community oriented—just exemplified what we look for in a police officer, and it is a huge loss."

In a 34-officer department where "everybody looks out for everybody, it's a tough loss, " Abdalla continued, also mentioning the last time a South Pas Officer died was in 1944.

Community members, such as Former Police Chief Dan Watson and those that recognized Sandoval from around town, shared their thoughts via Patch and Facebook about the officer Tuesday night. Here's a look into what they had to say:

"It was my privilege to hire Kevin Sandoval as a Cadet, Reserve Officer, and regular Police Officer. He was a fine young man with a bright future. Quiet, humble, and serious about being the best police officer he could be. This is a very sad day for the South Pasadena Police Department. My sincere condolences to Kevin's family, his extended family with SPPD, and the entire community for this tragic loss."

Former South Pas Police Chief ,   via Patch

Very Sad!!! He and his family are in our thoughts and prayers! I would see him around town all the time! :( God Bless him!!!!

Lisa Arciniega, 9:20, Tuesday via Facebook 

Kevin was with class 6 @ Rio Hondo Police academy. He was like a lil brother to me. He was my class mate @ the academy and a great friend. We will all miss him. He was known to all of us as Sandy, short for Sandoval....

,  via Patch 

My heartfelt condolences to member of the SPPD, they are a close family and he will be sorely missed. In my many encounters with Sandoval he was a dedicated and professional officer and a credit to community he worked for, he will be missed. Not only a loss to the department but to our community as well. To the members of the department he left behind, my sincerest sympathy on your loss.

,   via Patch 

Click here to read more details on the accident being investigated by the L.A. County Sheriff's Department.

Click here for information on the memorial fund. 

Click here to watch the press conference at South Pasadena Police Department Tuesday. 

Gloria June 15, 2011 at 02:53 PM
My prayers go out to his family and fellow officers, kevo was so dedicated to his job and community and knew he wanted to serve as an officer since we where in high school.... You will be missed kevo RIP
Sean Gaither June 15, 2011 at 03:57 PM
It is always sad to hear of the lost of a fellow law enforcement officer. I didn't know Officer Sandoval, but from the outpour of people that have posted here, I know it is a true lost to the community he served. My prayers go out to his family, friends and the community. Rest in peace Kevin, your shift is done. Det. Sean G. Trenton PD, NJ
Charles C. June 15, 2011 at 07:02 PM
My Condolences to his Family and Friends. What a great loss to the community and Family. I remember when Kevin was a kid in High school, he knew at an early age that his heart was set on becoming a police officer and doing good for the community. He set his goal and did excellent at everything he could to achieve it. When he made Cadet his family was very proud and they had endless smiles for weeks! He'd walk with his head high, big smiles, and was anxious to get out and be a positive part of and for the community. He'd come into my shop and we'd chat about his love for cars, his on the job experiences and I'd even give him the big brother girlfriend advice. He was a Handsome Young Man, Very Intelligent, and always had a positive aspect on life. He will be greatly missed. We Will Miss You Bro. Your Friend, Charles
Just My Opinion June 15, 2011 at 08:25 PM
Extremely sad and heartbreaking. Sincere heartfelt condolences and loving prayers to his family, friends and the So. Pas. Police Dept. from all of us at Twohey's Restaurant-Alhambra
Kevin brys June 15, 2011 at 09:02 PM
What a horrible day ! We have lost an amazing friend, partner, son, brother, and most importantly a person who in one way or another touched our lives. May God bless those who are closest to him, what an amazingly devoted young man kevin was at such a young age. He knew what he wanted and didnt let anything get in the way. Its going to take time to really understand why but we need to keep our heads up and be the best we can in honor of our fellow officer and friend. May God be with you Kevin and your family. Love Brys.
R. Ware June 16, 2011 at 02:32 AM
I had the pleasure of going through the academy with Sandy. What a great Officer. From your law enforcement family you will be missed but we will never forget your dedication to our profession. R.Ware LB Airport PD
saul Ruiz June 16, 2011 at 04:38 AM
I had the pleasure to work side by side with Kevin on some occasions and I remember thinking, this guys is very cool guy and most of all humble. He is a great lost to his family, friends and co-worker. He will be missed. R.I.P. OFC. SAUL RUIZ #194 POST ALARM SYSTEMS
Joseph Payne June 16, 2011 at 05:25 AM
We are so appreciative of the outpouring of support from the community. This has been a huge loss for our police department and extended family. Kevin is such a special person who energized his colleagues and brought a style of law enforcement that was a perfict fit for our community. During the relatively short time he was with us he impressed the rookies and veteran officers alike with his love for being a police officer and serving the people of South Pasadena. You may have noticed all the police officers from our surrounding communities who gave their time to keep our city safe as we grieved, attended the family and supported our fellow officers, and planned for his funeral. We cannot express enough our appreciation to these officers and their police chiefs who have so readily offered their services. Thank you all. Joseph Payne Chief of Police
Ed Cellucci June 17, 2011 at 01:17 AM
Sandoval was always helpful and courteous, a credit to his family and all who had the honor of knowing him. His presence will be missed by all. A bright light taken too soon. Ed Cellucci LA County Reserve Deputy Sheriff-Pico Rivera
Priscilla Flores June 17, 2011 at 06:29 PM
Such a sad time for those of us who knew Kevo.... I've known him since elementary school and he has always been a great person to talk and hang out with. He comes from a great family and will be sincerely missed. I will have that drink for us still next week Kev Luv you so much and will always be in my heart! -Priscilla
Priscilla Flores June 17, 2011 at 06:30 PM
Such a sad time for those of us who knew Kevo.... I've known him since elementary school and he has always been a great person to talk and hang out with. He comes from a great family and will be sincerely missed. I will have that drink for us still next week Kev Luv you so much and will always be in my heart! -Priscilla
Anthony Gonzales June 20, 2011 at 02:48 PM
Its still hard to comprehend that you're gone. From elementary to our senior year in high school you always talked about being a police officer, I'm glad that you made your dream come true. My prayers go to you and your wonderful family. God bless. You will be missed. -Anthony Gonzales
Jeremy June 26, 2011 at 06:43 AM
Kevin youe going to be missed. I was glad to have known you and been your friend. Rest in peace brother.

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