Governor Scott Walker recently presented awards during a ceremony in Madison to members of the Wisconsin Department of Transportation Division of State Patrol for their courageous actions and exemplary service.
The State Patrol’s two highest awards were presented to the family of Trooper Trevor Casper, who died heroically in an exchange of gunfire with a robbery and murder suspect in March in Fond du Lac.
In addition to the family of Trooper Casper, posthumous Purple Heart awards were presented to the families of three troopers who died in the line of duty before the award was created.
Special recognition also was given to agencies and organizations that assisted the State Patrol after the death of Trooper Casper.
“With the death of Trooper Trevor Casper, we were reminded of the inherent dangers of our profession,” said State Patrol Superintendent Stephen Fitzgerald. “Trooper Casper and all law enforcement officers who have given their lives to serve and protect others may no longer be with us physically but they will always be with us in spirit. Therefore, it is our duty to ensure they are not forgotten and their heroic deeds are forever acknowledged. Now and for years to come, we will find inspiration in their courage, sacrifice and selfless devotion to duty.”
Among those receiving awards was the State Patrol Honor Guard (Unit Citation). The Wisconsin State Patrol Honor Guard during 2014 and 2015 distinguished itself by representing the agency and the state of Wisconsin at 74 events around the nation including the National Law Enforcement Memorial ceremony in Washington, D.C., the National Governors’ Association Conference, the National Troopers Conference, and the State Patrol 75th Anniversary Banquet. In addition, the Honor Guard was an integral part of many services and ceremonies honoring fallen law enforcement officers.
The following Honor Guard members were awarded the Unit Citation: Trooper Lynn Coulson of Durand, Trooper Kelly Lynch of Sullivan, Trooper Michael Larsen of Sparta, Sergeant Jason Holtz of Tomah, Sergeant Jeramy Foster of Tomah, Trooper Richard Torrez of Cambridge, Trooper David Hanson of Oak Creek, Trooper Edward Schofield of Fond du Lac, Trooper Jamie Kahkola of Green Bay, Sergeant Luke Kraemer of Madison, Sergeant Bryan Wrycha of Tomahawk, Trooper Kristin Suthers of Tomahawk, Inspector Gary Koski of Park Falls, Inspector Greg Venne of Eau Claire, and Sergeant Robert Hartson of Merrill.