Watch CBS News

Long Island parkway bridges named in honor of fallen state troopers

3 fallen New York State Troopers honored on Long Island
3 fallen New York State Troopers honored on Long Island 02:17

WANTAGH, N.Y. -- Three heroes who died in the line of duty while protecting Long Islanders received long overdue honors Friday.

Future generations will now know of their sacrifice.

"I never had the opportunity to say the word 'dad' my whole life," said Helen Golder, daughter of fallen Trooper James Gohrey.

"It was very hard for my mother to raise four kids on her own. It was hard for me," said Peggy Poulson, Golder's sister.

They were young siblings when their father was killed in the line of duty in 1943.

"His memory is very strong. Three of his grandsons have gone into law enforcement," Poulson said.

"I never met him. I talk to him now, as I get older," Golder said.

Eighty years later, Golder can tell him he is not forgotten.

Gohrey's sacrifice will be known by all who drive Long Island roads. Nearly 50 of his children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren gathered on the Wantagh Parkway for a bittersweet honor -- to remember his tragic death while transporting evidence via motorcycle.

"Absolutely amazing, and a wonderful thing that they did," Golder said.

Eight Long Island parkway bridges are now named in memory of fallen troopers.

For the family of Trooper Theodore Dobbs, killed in 1924 on motorcycle patrol, it's an honor 100 years late.

"Sorry it took so long, but unfortunately, there's too many troopers that get killed," relative Charles Dobbs said.

"These people put their lives on the line every single day, and they need to be honored for doing that," relative Sharon McNaney said.

Also honored was Trooper John Lane, killed 96 years ago in an on-duty accident.

Families hope motorists will see the names and ponder the loss.

"That somebody stepped out there and did something that they weren't willing to do," relative Bill Dobbs said.

"Lessons in being a good person and giving back to the community, I mean, that's really what policing is about," said Charles Golder, grandson of Gohrey. "I pray every day that this is the last time we have to do this for any officer, trooper."

And now, one trooper's great-great-granddaughter will know the public's gratitude for heroic service.

"To actually see it memorialized and up for everyone else to see is really special for us," said Kyle Allan, the great-grandson of a fallen trooper.

Over the last century, 16 state troopers have died in the line of duty on Long Island. The tradition will continue until all of them are honored.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.