A Nebraska trooper was killed when another vehicle crossed the center line and struck his patrol unit head-on Thursday morning, reports KOLN/KGIN.
Nebraska State Patrol Trooper Jerry Smith, 51, was driving his patrol vehicle on Highway 26 in Morrill County in western Nebraska when the crash occurred around 7:45 a.m.
“This is a tragic day for the Nebraska State Patrol,” said Colonel John Bolduc, Superintendent of the Nebraska State Patrol. “A family has lost a husband and a father. Our troopers have lost a colleague and a friend. Our state has lost a true public servant.”
Trooper Smith was pronounced deceased at the scene. The driver of the other vehicle was ejected and was also pronounced deceased at the scene. The driver of a third vehicle that was involved in the crash was not seriously injured.
Smith, an army veteran, joined the Nebraska State Patrol in 2014, graduating with the 56th Basic Recruit Class on May 1, 2015. Graduating at the age of 47, he is believed to be the oldest recruit to ever complete Nebraska State Patrol’s Basic Recruit Camp. He was stationed in Scottsbluff as part of Troop E for his entire NSP career.
Trooper Smith is survived by his wife and two adult children.