Honoring fallen CCSO Deputy Saul Gallegos with the 18th and final Memorial Run.
June 26th 2003 at 1813 hours, an unidentified voice transmitted across Deputy Gallegos’ radio, “Officer Down.” A witness watched Deputy Gallegos physically struggle with a suspect who he had stopped for driving with a suspended license. The suspect was able to disarm Deputy Gallegos and end his life. The suspect then left the scene, armed with his handgun, fleeing to avoid capture. The witness went to help Saul and used his radio to expedite resources.
What transpired over the next 4 days would be one of the largest manhunts Chelan County has ever seen.
Saul had joined the Chelan County Sheriff’s Office on January 1st, 2003 after serving the citizens of the City of Chelan for over 8 years. He was a decorated Officer with the City of Chelan as he had been honored with Officer of the Year, promoted to Patrol Corporal, recognized as Citizen of the Year, received a Life Saving award, and accumulated multiple Letters of Commendation. Saul also received multiple Army Achievement Awards as he served his country as an Army Reserve for 6 years.
It was an easy transition for Saul to start with the Sheriff’s Office as he was stationed in the Chelan area. Saul had already established himself as an extremely competent Law Enforcement Official and established a family in the community.
Saul talked about his family with pride. He was the Father of 4 young boys and the husband to a wonderful wife. He talked about the challenges of raising 4 kids, but was excited to share stories about them. Saul started to remodel his home shortly after transferring to the Sheriff’s Office – it was a job he would not finish.
The night of his death, the surrounding Law Enforcement Community began searching for the suspect. Outside agencies flooded the region with help. The local community had heard of the horrific news and tips started to pour into dispatch. The suspect had been identified quickly and a multi-agency task force was closing in on him. On June 30th, the search led to Connell, WA where the suspect was taken into custody.
After an incredible memorial service at Chelan High School, that included more than 1,600 officers from around the world, Saul was transported back home to Mexico and laid to rest. The suspect would later be sentenced to life in prison. There was a huge void within the Chelan community knowing that Saul’s wife was left raising 4 young boys. While the family was grieving the loss of her husband out of the country, a community effort started at the Gallegos house. With the help of the Lake Chelan Building Supply, a full addition and remodel took place at the family home. For the next few months, hours of volunteer help constructed more bedrooms, bathrooms, a family room, and finished the remodel that Saul had started. It was amazing to watch the community support the Gallegos Family.
When the family returned home, the community stood outside the newly remodeled house to welcome them home. In 2005 members of the Sheriff’s Office, with the help of the community, started the Saul Gallegos Memorial Run. The intent was to raise money for a college fund for Saul’s children and to remember what a great person, husband, and father that Saul was. This year, 2023, marks the last year of the run. Saul’s children continue to lead very successful lives, lives that would make Saul extremely proud of the person each of them has become.
The Chelan County Sheriff’s Office is honored to have had Saul serve in his capacity as a Sheriff’s Deputy and we are very grateful for the sacrifices and support his family has made throughout their lives. In honor of Saul, CCSO retired his radio number, K20, to forever hold his place with the Office.
In order to honor Saul, we invite and encourage the community to sign up, donate, and participate in celebrating and honoring Saul at the final Deputy Saul Gallegos Memorial Run. The run will be held on Saturday June 24, 2023 at 8 am at Singleton Park in Manson, WA.