Mourners gather in Texas to honor slain trooper

This undated photo provided by the Texas Department of Public Safety shows Services for Texas Department of Public Safety Trooper Moises Sanchez. A public funeral has been set for Friday, Sept. 6, 2019, for the state trooper who died more than four months after he was shot while investigating a vehicle collision in South Texas. (Texas Department of Public Safety via AP)

EDINBURG, Texas (AP) — The eldest son of a Texas trooper who died several months after being shot in the head while investigating a car wreck told law enforcement officers Friday that his father was a man of "nearly perfect character."

Zachary Sanchez told mourners during the funeral in the far south Texas city of Edinburg that his father, Moises Sanchez, was committed to his law enforcement career and to being active in his community and his church.

"Some role models have fallen short, but that was never the case with my father," Sanchez said.

Joe Rodriguez, a former regional commander for the Texas Department of Public Safety, told the audience that Moises Sanchez was "strong, brave, steadfast."

"He was unafraid," Rodriguez said. "He was no doubt a fighter for good."

The 49-year-old Sanchez died Aug. 24, more than four months after he was shot near the scene of a vehicle collision in Edinburg. He began searching for the driver of one car on April 6 and found him nearby when the man pulled a gun and fired. The gunman fled, was later apprehended and is being held in a south Texas jail.

Sanchez was buried later Friday at Rio Grande Valley State Veterans Cemetery in Mission. Sanchez, who served four years in the U.S. Marine Corps, leaves a wife and three children, including Zachary Sanchez.

His law enforcement career began later in life. Sanchez worked for FedEx for more than 15 years before joining the Department of Public Safety in 2015, Rodriguez said.

He's the 222nd DPS officer to die while on duty since 1823, when the agency first began as the Texas Rangers and then evolved to become DPS in 1935 when the Rangers and Highway Patrol merged.