Bridge to be named after fallen trooper

Chuckatuck native who died in the line of duty with the Virginia State Police.

A Chuckatuck native who died in the line of duty with the Virginia State Police in September will have a bridge named after him in Prince George County.

The county’s board of supervisors unanimously approved a resolution on Dec. 8 supporting the naming of the bridge for Trooper Nathan-Michael W. Smith.

Smith crashed his patrol vehicle on Sept. 21 in Prince George County while responding to what he believed was a trooper in distress at another crash scene. He was 27 and was a 2005 graduate of Nansemond River High School. He was married with two children and had been with Virginia State Police for about a year and three months.

Smith crashed on the Interstate 295 south exit ramp to Interstate 95 north. The bridge that will be named for him is over Interstate 95 at exit 45, roughly two miles from the crash site.

“This memorial will mean a great deal to Trooper Smith’s fellow troopers and, most especially, his family,” said Virginia State Police Superintendent Col. W. Steven Flaherty. “It will serve as a permanent reminder of Trooper Smith’s oath and sincere dedication to serve and protect the Commonwealth. State police are truly grateful to Senator (Rosalyn) Dance and the Prince George County Board of Supervisors for their swift action and support of this measure.”

Dance represents part of Prince George County. The final decision rests with the Virginia Department of Transportation.

During an interview when he first joined the state police, Smith told the News-Herald last year that he has always wanted to be in law enforcement.

“As a kid, I would memorize license plates and identify cars,” he said. “I’ve always been interested in helping and serving the public in any way that I can.”

He chose the state police because it is a prestigious organization, he said.

“If you’re going to be in law enforcement, why not do it for the state, because that’s the best agency you can be with,” he said.

Smith was the 61st sworn employee of the Virginia State Police to die in the line of duty.

Article taken from The Suffolk News-Herald –
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