‘A big man with a big heart’: Texas game warden dies of COVID-19

‘With a big smile, a big presence, a big heart, and a big impact, he made our Department and our work better.’

Game Warden Sgt. Christopher Ray Wilson
Game Warden Sgt. Christopher Ray Wilson (Texas Parks and Wildlife Department)

A Texas game warden has died from COVID-19.

Game Warden Sgt. Christopher Ray Wilson died Thursday, the agency announced in a Facebook post. He was a father of four children.

Wilson “left this earth on the afternoon of August 26th after valiantly battling a series of health complications related to COVID,” the announcement reads.

“Chris was a big man with a big heart, who left a positive impression and impact for all those fortunate enough to have worked and spent time with him over his 16 years of exemplary service to the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) and our grateful state,” TPWD Executive Director Carter Smith said in the tribute.

Wilson began his TPWD career in 2004 with the 50th Game Warden Cadet class in Austin, Texas. Upon graduating in 2004, Chris’s first duty assignment was in San Saba County. In 2012, he transferred to Bell County. And in 2016, after 12 years in the field, Wilson was promoted to Sgt. Special Investigator.

“Chris proudly served our Home Ground as a State Game Warden with great purpose, pride, and dedication.  With a big smile, a big presence, a big heart, and a big impact, he made our Department and our work better.  His End of Watch leaves a hole in the hearts of many a colleague and many a Texan, all of whom are grieving the loss of his presence, but grateful beyond words, for the dignity, strength, and sacrifice of his service.  May he rest in peace.”


About the Author:

Briana Zamora-Nipper joined the KPRC 2 digital team as a community associate producer in 2019. During her time in H-Town, she's covered everything from fancy Houston homes to tropical storms. Previously, she worked at Austin Monthly Magazine and KAGS TV, where she earned a Regional Edward R. Murrow award for her work as a digital producer.