Biography for fallen Pierce County Deputy Dom Calata

Dom Calata was born into a proud military family on November 15, 1986, to Rey and Angie Calata. Dom spent most of his life in Pierce County after his family was stationed here, and they stayed after his father retired from the Army.

His sister, Christina, served in the US Air Force. According to his father, Dom was always fascinated by the Army and loved to play soldier as a kid.

Dom attended Bethel High School and graduated with the class of 2004. He went on to attend Pacific Lutheran University, where he studied political science and government. He also met the love of his life, Erin, at PLU before graduating in 2008. They have been inseparable on life’s adventures ever since.

Erin and Dom have a wonderful 3-year-old son, Dylan. Dom loved to talk about Dylan and was always eager to share his pictures and milestones with others. Dylan has his father’s charisma and smile, qualities that will continue to be adored by his family and friends.

Dom completed the Army ROTC program at PLU and was commissioned as an Armor Officer in the US Army. His first assignment was to the 1st Cavalry Division at Fort Hood, Texas. He deployed to Iraq twice as a Platoon Leader and then as a Company Executive Officer. He became a Military Intelligence Officer in 2012 and was stationed at Joint Base Lewis-McChord as a Captain.

Dom and Erin were very excited to move back home to the Pacific Northwest. He was assigned as a Battalion Intelligence Officer in the 16th Combat Aviation Brigade, and he deployed with them to Afghanistan in 2014.

In 2015, after seven years of service on active duty, Dom started his law enforcement career and transitioned to the Washington Army National Guard, where he was promoted to Major and assigned to the Special Operations Detachment - Pacific. He deployed with them to Afghanistan in 2019 as their Deputy Intelligence Director. Upon his return to Washington in 2020, he served as SOD-P’s Intelligence Director. In 2021, he was selected to be the Commander of the Washington Army National Guard’s Officer Candidate School (OCS) program.

In 2015, Dom was hired by the Pierce County Sheriff’s Department, his top choice agency. He attended the Washington Basic Law Enforcement Academy in Class 725, where he graduated at the top of his class and was selected by his peers for the Patrol Partner award. He breezed through field training in a manner that few rookies ever do and chose to work the night shift for many years because of the intensity of the work.

Dom quickly earned a reputation as a level-headed hardworking team player, and a great investigator. He showed common sense and respect to everyone he met during his shift. He was constantly selected to represent the department because of his genuine personality and his articulate commentary. Dom’s abilities allowed him to fast-track into senior special assignments, including the SWAT Team and the US Marshals’ Violent Offender Task Force. In addition, he shared his knowledge as a Field Training Officer and a Defensive Tactics Instructor. He quickly became a leader within all of these teams. Dom was also assigned to the Sheriff’s Department’s Central Patrol, Pierce Transit Police, and Edgewood Police contracts.

Dom loved spending time outdoors with his family, hiking, biking, and camping. He recently became an avid hunter. He was also passionate about Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and looked forward to introducing these hobbies to Dylan. He constantly planned gatherings for all of his social groups and was influential to everyone around him. Dom normalized telling his peers, “I love you,” and he was usually the first to suggest taking a group picture. These two things turned out to be immensely comforting during the last week.

Deputy Calata was everything society hopes for in a cop.

Major Calata was everything the military wants in its leaders.

And Dom Calata was everything you could ever wish for in a friend.

Dom was the best example of these things because he was passionate about the variety of hard jobs he did, and he loved the people he did them with.