The Book - "TROOPER 2"


The blue 1946 Chevrolet Coupe pulled over to the curb in front of the A&P Store, and a State Trooper alighted from the driver’s door. He looked around Main Street of the small Indiana Town and noticed a number of familiar sights, including the garage where he had watched one of his boyhood heroes, Walter "Hot John" Eckert, an Indiana Trooper in the 1930’s, fill his State Police Motorcycle with gasoline, from the garage’s "Standard" gasoline pump.

It was mid January in Osgood, Indiana, and the Trooper was dressed in the Indiana State Police Department winter uniform; that included the Eisenhower jacket, blue Stetson uniform hat, blue wool shirt with light blue tie, breeches, black leather boots, and a black leather gun belt with cross-draw holster for the six-inch Colt Revolver.

A State Police Silver Badge, number two hundred and seventy five, was pinned over his left jacket pocket. The Chevrolet Coupe was his, as Indiana Troopers with nine days experience were not issued patrol vehicles.

"Badge 275"

Our personage paused, for a moment, then entered the door to the A&P Store, where a "father" saw for the first time, his son in a State Police Uniform. The "shared pride" at this meeting was evident, and they embraced for a moment, but little did the Trooper know his father would not survive a heart attack, only fifteen months after this January 1948 meeting at the A&P.

This day belonged to the twenty-one-year-old from Osgood’s South Sycamore Street who had returned from duty in the United States Army Air Corps, and following Army Service, entered Indiana University and earned a Two-Year Certificate, from the University’s Institute of Criminal Law Administration.

After completing college, the Indiana State Police Department took him before the Indiana Supreme Court Chief Justice, who would swear him in as Indiana’s newest State Trooper. Not on that day, nor at the A&P, could the new Trooper have envisioned the path history would carve for him in the years to come.