ROCK ISLAND, Illinois - Amid a sea of uniforms, the Centennial Bridge was re-dedicated Monday in honor of a Quad City trooper who died in the line of duty during a roadside safety check there in 2001.
Hundreds of people attended the outdoor ceremony at the foot of the Centennial to unveil the new signage for the Master Sgt. Stanley Talbot Memorial Bridge.
"This is a celebration of a great man's life. I will forever be grateful to Stan for the lesson he taught me about brotherhood, dedication, trust, and leadership. He was a consummate professional, a great teacher, a true warrior, and a cop's cop," said retired Illinois State Police Capt. Dan Roach.
Talbot was six months away from retiring when he was killed. The 26-year veteran was dragged by a vehicle at the safety check, and was run over by another police officer after he fell off the car.
"Stan would not go home at night until everybody on his shift was home safe. That's the kind of guy he was," said retired Illinois State Trooper John Hatfield, who was a pallbearer at Talbot's funeral.
"It will be nice to drive over and see the sign and think of Stan. He was the kind of guy you couldn't help but love," he said.
Both of Talbot's children followed in their fathers footsteps and attended Monday's ceremony, along with dozens of retired officers who worked with the state trooper.
The new signage created after a legislative bill sponsored by State Sen. Neil Anderson was signed into law in May. The bridge re-dedication, Anderson says, the perfect tribute to the fallen officer.
"This marks the spot where his last watch was, and I hope people see that and they think about the sacrifice he made and the sacrifice all law enforcement officers make," Anderson said.