CARRIZO SPRINGS, Texas – The flags at Carrizo Springs City Hall were lowered to half-staff in memory of its 58-year-old city manager Ramiro Munoz Jr.
Munoz died Tuesday after being airlifted to San Antonio from the scene of a crash north of town on U.S. Highway 83.
DPS reports Munoz had to be freed from the wreckage of his pickup, crushed by an overturned cement truck.
Trooper Maria Madrigal confirmed the cement truck had a blow-out, but then over-corrected causing it to topple over.
Married and the father of two grown children, Munoz had been on the job less than a month, hired by the previous administration.
"But my first day on the job, I saw what he was doing," said Adrian DeLeon, the newly elected mayor of Carrizo Springs. "I knew he was the right man for the job."
He said Munoz was well known and respected in the community as the longtime manager of HEB stores in Carrizo Springs and Crystal City.
DeLeon also said after retiring, Munoz became a math teacher at the Intermediate School.
He said Munoz postponed his start date as city manager because he wanted to make sure his students did well during state mandated testing.
DeLeon said one of Munoz's priorities was the heavy traffic generated by the Eagle Ford boom.
"The amount of traffic on the road nowadays is unbelievable," DeLeon said.
Dimmit County Sheriff Marion Boyd said at a city council meeting the night before his death that Munoz had asked for funds to help the county hire more deputies.
"This is something we're not used to. We've had five deaths in the past week," Boyd said.
He said last Friday, four people were killed in a head-on collision on Highway 83, including two teenaged children of a suspected drunk driver.
Although not oilfield-related, the sheriff said the overwhelming traffic is increasing the risk of other dangerous accidents.
The sheriff said, "It's not if it's going to happen, it's just a matter of when."
As a result, Boyd said he's instructed his deputies to take a zero tolerance approach to speeders and other traffic law violators.