HOUSTON (CBSDFW.COM) – A 14-year veteran Texas deputy died Saturday after contracting COVID-19, authorities said.

The Harris County Sheriff’s Office said deputy Juan Menchaca, 70, died “after a courageous battle against COVID-19.” He is also the second employee in the department to die after contracting the virus.

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“Deputy Menchaca was a beloved member of our family, and he will be terribly missed by all of us who had the honor of knowing him,” Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said. “I ask the entire community to lift up Deputy Menchaca, his wife, Melissa, and their entire family in their prayers.”

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Deputy Juan Menchaca (Credit: Harris County Sheriff’s Office/Twitter)

The department said there are 332 employees who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus and that 15 of them are currently hospitalized, while 254 have recovered.

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There are currently over 16,000 cases of COVID-19 in Harris County, which is the highest in the state.