Colleagues, friends remember accomplishments of retired Converse asst. police chief killed by suspected drunk driver
Rodney ‘Rex’ Rheiner killed Tuesday by suspected drunk driver on Nacogdoches near O’Connor
SAN ANTONIO – Rodney Rheiner, known affectionately as Rex, was said to be a policeman who was by the book.
Twenty-seven years on the job was more than enough time for him to make a significant impact on those he met.
“Started as a police officer, worked himself all the way up to assistant chief. Very involved in the community — Eagle Scout, FBI, academy graduate,” said Converse Mayor Al Suarez about Rheiner. “He was a fun guy to be around. He was very, very knowledgeable on everything.”
Rheiner was a trusted voice and heavily relied on by Converse city leaders.
“He was the only person allowed to speak for me because I knew that he'd do right,” Suarez said.
Inspiring colleagues seemed to be part of Rheiner's job with the Converse Police Department before retiring in March 2017.
“He encouraged me to continue on with my training and education and how important it would be,” said Converse Patrol Agent Paul Bocconcelli.
Around 9 p.m. Tuesday, San Antonio police say the SUV that Rheiner was in was struck by 23-year-old Jeanne-Nicole Bernice Coutros.
Rheiner died as a result of the crash that happened on Nacogdoches near O’Connor.
Police say Coutros sped off after being pulled over by police for driving erratically.
Coutros is charged with intoxication manslaughter and evading arrest and detention with a vehicle.
“He would tell you, ‘There is no guaranteed tomorrow. Do everything that you possibly can today.’ And so for it to end this way is exactly what he meant,” said Converse Police Department Assistant Chief Pam Hunt.
Rheiner was in his late 50s. He leaves behind two sons and two grandchildren. Flags will be lowered to half-staff until his funeral services, which will include a police and fire department procession.
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