Late Friday (11-27-2020) The Houston Police Department lost a 36 year veteran in 60 year old Ernest Leal, Jr. who died of Covid. Sunday (11-29-2020) his body was given a full HPD escort from the hospital to the funeral home. . An HPD Honor Guard member said, "We're going to honor Ernest this week. We will honor his 36 years of dedication to this community and this city. While our hearts are heavy, our spirits will remain strong." , Another said, "Ernie was an inspiration to all of us on the squad. Despite his being the most senior member of the squad - he was the hardest working member of this squad."
Leal is the first Houston Police Officer to die from complications related to Covid-19. Three Harris County Sheriff's Deputies and a Constable Deputy with Precinct 5 have also died from the virus this year.