State Police Mourn Loss of Dedicated Veteran Trooper
From Albany to South Glens Falls, traffic on the Northway stood still for a man who patrolled the major highway for decades.
Police and fire departments from throughout the Capital Region paid their respects to Trooper Timothy Pratt at overpasses just hours after the 30-year state police veteran was struck and killed by an oncoming car Wednesday morning.
"Every winter storm, he was out there dodging traffic, and unfortunately, it was his dangerous job which brought us here today," said Sgt. Steven Hopsicker of the New York State Police.
A full procession transported the 55-year-old's body to MB Kilmer's Funeral Home, just miles from where he was attempting to help a tractor trailer driver early in the morning on Ballard Road in Wilton.
"The driver told him he had missed a turn to the Ace Hardware store, and Trooper Pratt was going to assist him in getting the vehicle turned around," said Major William Keeler, the NYSP Troop G commander. "Trooper Pratt stepped down from the vehicle into the eastbound lane, and he was struck."
At this point, state police haven't filed any charges and don't anticipate doing so.
"It appears he stepped into a lane of traffic," Keeler said. "It was dark. Maybe he didn't see the vehicle coming; the vehicle didn't see him."
And although their hearts are heavy, those who worked with Pratt say they're trying to take one of the many lessons they learned from him for his fiancée and children.
"He had a great sense of humor," Hopsicker said. "We'd be at an incident and it would be a traumatic situation for the family, and he would have everyone laughing in stitches. He would keep the situation calm and under control so we would get a good resolution to the situation."