Funeral service for State Trooper Kevin Miller held in East Hartford

EAST HARTFORD -- It has been one week since the tragic death of Connecticut State Trooper First Class Kevin Miller.

Miller was killed in an accident in Tolland on I-84 Eastbound and since then, people near and far have traveled to Connecticut to pay their respects.

Miller's wake was held Thursday and it brought in community members all around.

There were two rounds of calling hours at the Pratt & Whitney Stadium at Rentschler Field. It started with a procession at the Introvigne Funeral Home in Stafford Springs and then to Troop C where Miller was based and ended at Rentschler Field.

"It was a tragic way for him to go and go so young," said Dutty Lutty, a member with the Marine Corps League.

Since Miller's passing, those are the words that have been repeated. He was a trooper and a father whose life was taken too soon.

Throughout the procession, Miller had people by his side and above as Manchester firefighters hung a flag over the highway.

During Miller's calling hours, there was a large police presence where troopers traveled as far from Texas.

"It doesn't matter what color the uniform is or what part of the country you're stationed in, it's a brotherhood," said Sgt. David Murphy of the Texas Highway Patrol.

Along with Sergeant David Murphy was Greg Wilmoth who said it hit home for Texas, the state lost two troopers themselves two months ago.

"We're out on the road every day. What happened to the trooper here could've happened to any law enforcement officer across the nation anywhere," said Greg Wilmoth of the Texas Highway Patrol.

Whether people knew Miller personally or not, they felt compelled to pay their respects like Dan Lutty with the Marine Corps League. Miller was also a marine veteran and Lutty said he felt an instant connection.

"I couldn't believe it. What had happened, how it happened, you just can't comprehend. For something like that, something must have distracted him for a split second," said Lutty.

As Miller gets put to rest Friday morning,  flowers at Troop C will be a reminder to every trooper risking their lives every day.

"We're going to come home. At least we hope we come home," added Sgt. David Murphy.

Miller's funeral will be held Friday at 11 a.m. also at Rentschler Field.

Police from across the country are in Connecticut for the funeral

The 49-year-old trooper was a 19-year veteran of the force. He died while on duty March 29 when his cruiser rear-ended a slow-moving tractor-trailer on Interstate 84 eastbound in Tolland. The cause remains under investigation.

Miller was the 22nd state trooper or auxiliary trooper killed in the line of duty since 1922.

Checks should be mailed to: Kevin Miller Memorial Fund, Connecticut State Police Union, 500 Main Street, East Hartford, Connecticut 06118-1034.

Donations can also be made through a GoFundMe page.