ELK GROVE (CBS13) — A funeral service will be held for fallen Consumnes firefighter Albaro Meraz on Saturday, Dec. 29.

Meraz died in a solo-vehicle crash on Highway 99 Saturday. He was not on duty at the time.

The service will  be held at Good Shepherd Catholic Church in Elk Grove at 11 a.m.

Meraz leaves behind a wife and two children. He was a 17 year veteran with the Cosumnes Fire Department.

He was described as an active and dedicated firefighter who was well respected by everyone who knew him. He was an athlete who competed in the Boston Marathon and participated in the Battle of the Badges charity boxing program.

Cosumnes Fire Chief, Mike McLaughlin stated, “Firefighter Meraz was a deeply valued brother in the fire service, among the 185 members of the Cosumnes Fire family and our local community. Our hearts are broken for his wife Dina, son Josh, and daughter Cheyenne for their loss.”

READ: Three Sent To Hospital In Christmas Eve House Fire, One In Critical Condition

Meraz received multiple awards throughout his career. In 2007, he received the Valor Award for his service in the course of duty.

In 2009, he received the Firemark award for his work distributing smoke detectors to non-English speaking residents in the community, He also taught first aid to farmers in the Sacramento area and taught modern firefighting techniques to firefighters from Mexico.

The California Highway Patrol tells CBS13 the accident was reported at 1:45 p.m. A 1971 Toyota was traveling southbound on Highway 99 crash into the median causing the vehicle rollover. CHP says other motorists did pull over to flip the firefighter’s private vehicle upright.

Meraz succumbed to his injuries and died on scene. Alcohol is not believed to have been a factor.

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