JERSEY VILLAGE, Texas – The Houston Sikh community is in mourning after losing what they feel was one of their shining stars.
Harris County Deputy Sandeep Dhaliwal, who was gunned down during a traffic stop Friday afternoon, worshiped and worked with families at the Sikh National Center near Jersey Village.
"The whole community is under the shock even now," says Harjit Singh Galhotra. "Some people don't want to even believe that this happened. It happened so fast that it's really not believable."
Dhaliwal was the center's youth community leader. He is being remembered as an individual who made a tremendous impact on not only those young people, but also everyone he came into contact with.
"He was very dear with all the people and he had a lot of friends in this community," Galhotra says. "We're going to miss him really bad."
That sentiment is being shared by many.
"This fallen officer was an essential element of this community," says Dr. Hardam Singh Azad.
With the sudden shock and sadness of losing such a beloved member, they also are praying and celebrating a man who become a leader and dynamic presence. They just wish Dhaliwal had been given a little more time.
"If he had a longer life he would've accomplished much more many milestones," Galhotra states. "You never know. He could've become a sheriff of this county."
Members of the national center said they are still in such shock that they haven't had time to think about funeral arrangements.
Per Sikh tradition, Dhaliwal's funeral will be held within three days of his death and he likely will be cremated.