A Connecticut State Police Trooper passed away on Thursday.
Trooper First Class Walter Greene passed away in the line of duty following a courageous battle with cancer as a result of his response and service in support of New York City in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001, terrorist attack.
Governor Dannel P. Malloy directed all U.S. and state flags in CT to be lowered at half-staff in honor of Greene.
Greene was a member of the 101st Training Troop and most recently was assigned to the Traffic Services Unit.
“Our hearts are with the family of Trooper First Class Walter Greene – a man who dedicated his life’s work to protecting the people of Connecticut and our country,” Governor Malloy said. “He is a hero and passionately served our nation in the Marine Corps before joining the Connecticut State Police. Men like Trooper First Class Greene personify what it means to give back to the community and to dedicate one’s life work in the name of others.”
Greene served in the U.S. Marine Corps for four years before joining the Connecticut State Police in 1990.
He was assigned to Troops A and G during his career, as well as the Statewide Cooperative Crime Control Task Force.
Those who worked with Greene said he was most comfortable on his motorcycle.
He was a master instructor for motor services for the past 10 years.
"He would oversee the motorcycle unit while he was home recuperating. He really was a dedicated state police trooper, the best of the best," said Paul Vance, former State Police Lieutenant.
Vance worked in the traffic services unit with Greene. He knew Greene was sick, but says he fought hard not to show it.
Greene went to Ground Zero after the terrorist attack on 911 with a group of state police troopers. His service may have cost him his life.
It was there, Greene was exposed to chemicals that can cause cancer.
The World Trade Center Program was established after 911 to help first responders and survivors. It pays for health monitoring and treatment.
"The ones who sought to save others on that day are now suffering the health consequences and that's why we need to protect that fund and expand it," said Senator Richard Blumenthal.
"Trooper First Class Greene was one of the victims, never had any symptoms, he worked hard after 911, but then the disease took hold and he lost his life," said Vance.
Flags will remain at half-staff in his honor until further notice.
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