Friends, colleagues reflect on state trooper killed in wreck

Friends, colleagues reflect on state trooper killed in wreck

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Trooper Michael Slagle (Source: THP) Trooper Michael Slagle (Source: THP)

KNOXVILLE (WATE)- We're learning more about the state trooper who died on duty Friday morning.  

The Tennessee Highway Patrol says trooper Michael Slagle suffered a heart attack.

His car slid off an icy road near the intersection of Longmire Road and Emory Road Friday morning.

A fire truck responding to the wreck lost control in the same spot, landing on part of the cruiser. 

Trooper Slagle, a 26-year veteran of THP, never made it to his assignment of working with the Supreme Court in Knox County Friday morning.  

"It's kind of heart to believe that's happened, and he's gone," said Jim Poore of Knoxville.

Jim Poore says the news devastated him, and he was torn up even though he only met the trooper a handful of times.  

Jim's mother, a former nurse at UT Medical Center, became good friends with the trooper during his frequent visits to the hospital as part of his job.  

"They had a rapport between both of them. She treated him like son, and he treated her as a mom," said Poore.  

It's clear that Trooper Slagle had a larger than life personality. Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett ran into him quite often.

"He was a good guy. He really was a trooper's trooper, and he had a great personality and no ego about him. It really breaks my heart for his family," Burchett said.

Colleagues remember Trooper Slagle as a great person to work with.    

"Great guy, easy to work with, easy to get along with. Everybody liked him," said Lt. Michael Melhorn with THP.  

Jim Poore's mother even joked he was his adopted brother during the first time Jim met the trooper after being treated for an accident at the hospital years ago.

"He was that likeable. You couldn't resist his charm and kindness. He's just this way," Poore said.  

Trooper Slagle is survived by his wife, two daughters and a son.  Funeral arrangements are pending at this time.

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