Friends, family mourn the loss of CT State Trooper First Class Kevin Miller

TOLLAND - Friends and family are mourning the loss of Trooper First Class Kevin Miller after he was tragically killed in a crash on I-84 eastbound Thursday afternoon.

Members of a local Facebook group called "Tolland Cares" made a memorial earlier Friday afternoon dedicated to Miller. It now sits on the grass outside the doors of Troop C in Tolland.

People that knew Miller well said there was more behind the uniform.

"Always helping his son Ryan and you know, playing baseball in the yard, just real down to earth, quiet-natured, good-hearted person," said Micah Welintukonis, a neighbor of Miller.

Welintukonis was Miller's neighbor and his good friend. He said they used to always joke with each other and bonded over the veteran life.

Instead, he found himself draping two flags over the highway as he is now saddened over the loss of a good friend.

"Every hour of every day for little pay and benefits and Kevin’s leaving behind two kids," added Welintukonis.

Matthew Corey said his brother served with Miller at Troop K in Colchester. He also helped Welintukonis hang the flags and one of them had a thin, blue line that represents the tight bond law enforcement has.

"Every day, they’re out there putting their lives on the line, I think people should remember that," said Corey.

At Troop C, Miller's colleagues surrounded themselves around the memorial and all of them had their head down in sorrow.

The memorial was George Law's idea who is the founder of a local Faceook group called "Tolland Cares."

"It should open everybody’s eyes to what they go through. I mean, the sacrifice they give, the sacrifice their families give. I couldn’t do it," said George Laws of Tolland. "This is the tightest community I've ever lived in.

State police released the accident report Thursday evening with limited details and it remains under investigation.

Miller was also a martial arts instructor and there will be a brief ceremony held at 9:30 a.m. at Aikido Hartford Dojo.