Veteran L.A. Park Ranger Capt. Alberto Torres -- well known to advocates of Debs, Elysian, Griffith and other city parks -- died over the weekend after apparently suffering a heart attack, according to officials.
Torres collapsed Friday at Ranger Headquarters at the Griffith Park Visitor Center after patrolling San Fernando Valley area parks near the Saddle Ridge Fire, said CBS2. He died the next morning at a hospital in Glendale.
"He came to our [park advisory board] meetings regularly and was a great friend to the Audubon Center and Debs Park," said Martha Benedict with the Debs Park Advisory Board. "He would have been 68 in December and probably would have never retired. His loss is a terrible blow."
Torres worked for the Park Rangers for 40 years, serving in numerous positions, including that as of acting chief. He also reportedly helped create the citywide unit that focuses on homeless outreach and cleanup, the station reported.
"He has left an everlasting impact on many," said a post on the L.A. Park Rangers Instagram account. "He has provided safety to the public, sharing his vast knowledge on plants and wildlife and his constant willingness to offer mentorship and counseling."
L.A. City Attorney Mike Feuer paid tribute to Torres on Twitter.
"All of us send out love and support to the family and many friends of Capt. Albert Torres of the L.A. Park Rangers," Feuer wrote. "He was incredibly dedicated to our parks and a wonderful partner to many on our staff. He was always upbeat and always ready to roll up his sleeves and help."
He is survived by his wife Cheryl Torres, daughter Elizabeth Torres and son Brian Torres, said L.A. Park Rangers.