Community remembers well-known East Texas business owner Tony Cruz

Tony Cruz
Tony Cruz
Updated: Dec. 17, 2018 at 9:57 AM CST
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TYLER, TX (KLTV) - A community is mourning the loss of well-known East Texas business owner, Tony Cruz.

DPS officials said 57-year-old Anthony Cruz, or Tony as he is fondly known by his friends and family, died Saturday afternoon when a tree fell on the road and he crashed into it. Now, his family and friends are honoring his memory.

“He was a very well-known figure in the community, and so everyone looked up to him and respected him," said Brandon Mullican, one of Cruz’s employees.

A father-figure, a man of God, and a fitness guru are just a few ways people remember Cruz.

“Tony is a fitness and wellness professional; he was all into healthy living, but he was also, along with that, a very spiritual person," said Ed Santos, a friend of Cruz’s. “He wanted the whole person to be developing.”

You saw him on KLTV as the owner of XTC Fitness when he demonstrated how he trained military athletes.

He went on to continue his fitness training at the Tyler Athletic and Swim Club.

“So, I’ve seen all kinds of personal trainers, but I’ve never seen anybody like Tony," Mullican said.

Friends of the military veteran said helping others was extremely important to him.

“So, everybody always wanted to be around him and just embrace you know his positivity and his vibes," he said. "We all enjoyed being around him every day.”

His positivity and kindness is what they’ll miss most.

“I know definitely that he will be deeply missed and that his brave family will have a lot of support," Santos said.

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