The Louisville Metro Police Department is reeling after the death of veteran Officer Zachary Cottongim, who was hit by a driver on Interstate 64 Saturday morning.

Cottongim, 29, who was with the department for seven years, was on foot tending to an abandoned vehicle around 10 a.m. when he was hit by a westbound driver who had lost control of their vehicle, LMPD spokeswoman Officer Elizabeth Ruoff told the Courier Journal.

He underwent surgery at the University of Louisville Hospital but died from his injuries shortly after 9 p.m. Cottongim was in and out of surgeries for 10 hours but couldn't be saved, Chief Erika Shields said late Saturday outside the hospital.

Ruoff noted the incident was not a hit-and-run and said the department’s traffic unit is investigating “all variables." Police said a total of three vehicles were involved in the accident but didn't yet have details.

Cottongim is survived by a wife and two children. 

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