Fallen Troopers Honored in Luzerne County

HAZLE TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- A memorial service in Luzerne County honored all state troopers who have lost their lives in the line of duty.

Troopers at the Hazleton Barracks paid special tribute to three from our area.

35 years ago, Trooper William Evans lost his life in the line of duty.

"It's just a really good feeling to know that he may not be here, but he's still in the hearts and minds of everyone," said Evan's daughter Kathy Popa.

Popa attended a memorial service honoring him and all the other fallen state troopers across the state at the PSP Hazleton Barracks in Luzerne County.

"We've always gone to Hershey to the State Police Academy, so this is the first time to be more in the home territory in Troop N. It definitely has a close family feeling," said Popa.

"The importance of today's ceremony is to celebrate 113 years of the Pennsylvania State Police, but more importantly, to honor the 98 members who have given their lives in the line of duty," said Capt. Robert Bartal, Pennsylvania State Police.

Similar ceremonies are held all across the state on May 2.

Retired state troopers are invited to the service to help honor those who have passed on.

"I think it is always important to remember your roots and to honor those who have given their lives in the performance of their duties for the Commonwealth and the citizens of Pennsylvania," said Capt. Bartal.

As for Trooper Evans' daughter, she's an elementary school teacher who now spreads her father's legacy to her students. They just held a luncheon to honor law enforcement this week.

"I get the impression that some people are desensitized to the loss of officers of law enforcement, and it's good to show them that they are humans. There's family behind them."