Litchfield, IL -- Illinois State Police, elected officials, and family members today honored fallen Illinois State Police (ISP) Trooper Kyle Deatherage with a memorial sign on Interstate 55 near Litchfield, Illinois, marking the location of the fatal crash that ended his life in November of 2012. The dedication was held at ISP District 18 headquarters, Trooper Deatherage’s last district of assignment.
On November 26, 2012, while on patrol as a motorcycle officer, Trooper Deatherage was conducting a traffic stop on the shoulder of northbound I-55 at milepost 62 when he was struck and killed by a truck tractor semi-trailer. Trooper Deatherage joined the Illinois State Police in 2009, and was 32 years of age at the time of the fatal crash.
Officials from the ISP, Illinois Department of Transportation and various community leaders along with friends and family of Trooper Deatherage, praised the fallen officer for his many contributions to public service. Trooper Deatherage was remembered for his dedication to the various law enforcement agencies he served in Illinois, including the Illinois State Police, Madison County Sheriff’s Office, and the Staunton Police Department.
“Trooper Kyle Deatherage’s legacy will forever be remembered by those who were fortunate enough to have known him,” said ISP Director Hiram Grau. “Kyle was one of the good ones…an all around special person who always gave of himself and never expected anything in return,” added Grau.
Trooper Deatherage was considered a mentor and motivational leader by his friends and colleagues, and he was admired for his selfless actions, including when he volunteered to join 28 other fellow ISP officers and traveled to New Jersey to aid the area severely damaged by Hurricane Sandy. That day, November 26, 2012, was Trooper Deatherage’s first day back to duty after returning from service in the east coast.
Deatherage’s commitment to duty and service was unwavering. Earlier this month, he was posthumously awarded with the Department’s Purple Heart Medal during the Department’s Annual Awards ceremony. His mother, Mrs. April Deatherage, graciously accepted the prestigious honor on his behalf.
Earlier this year, State Rep. Wayne Rosenthal (R-Morrisonville) carried House Joint Resolution 12, which was passed honoring Trooper Deatherage by designating the northbound and southbound Coalfield rest stops at milepost 64 on Interstate 55 as the Trooper Kyle Deatherage Memorial Rest Stop.
“Today, we honor the dedication and bravery Trooper Deatherage gave to serve and protect his community and family,” said Rep. Wayne Rosenthal. “Kyle’s passion, honor and respect for his family and fellow police officers will never be forgotten.”
Senator Sam McCann (R-Carlinville) sponsored the legislation in the Senate and praised Deatherage’s commitment to service.
“It is only fitting to honor a man who gave his life serving and protecting the people of the state,” said Senator Sam McCann. “While nothing can bring Trooper Deatherage back to his family, it’s our hope that this memorial be a lasting memory of his service and dedication to his family, community, and state.”
Among the many accomplishments he enjoyed through his hard work and dedication, Trooper Deatherage’s lifelong dream had recently been fulfilled when he won assignment to the ISP motorcycle unit.
Trooper Deatherage was born in Maryville, Illinois in 1980 and graduated from Triad High School in 1998. Trooper Deatherage held an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice from Lewis & Clark College.
Trooper Kyle W. Deatherage is survived by his wife, Sarah, his daughter Kaylee and his son Camden. Other surviving family members include his parents, grandmother, and siblings.