Photos: Fellow officers, citizens honor route of fallen trooper

EVERETT -- Sean O'Connell was an extremely popular and dedicated trooper, who loved his motorcycle duties, his fellow troopers, his family and friends, and his community.

People everywhere honored him Sunday, with many honking and waving on freeway overpasses--to watch the motorcade make its way down I-5--from Mount Vernon to the funeral home in Everett.

"We're grieving, and we need to take care of our families," trooper Keith Leary. "Cause it impacts all of us."

More than a hundred patrol cars and motorcycles---escorted the fallen patrolman.

"Seeing all these patrol cars. Seeing all these lights coming down the road--to me symbolizes what a great guy he was," he said. "The power of his being here on this Earth. And now seeing him gone is unimaginable."

The outpouring of support from even strangers, is uplifting in this time of sorrow.

"Just felt like the right thing to do, to come out here and pay our respects," Joseph DeLaurentis of Snohomish said. "When times are hard, just all come together. Just helps (us) feel like a better community."

O'Connell died Friday evening at an intersection just outside Mount Vernon after his motorcycle collided with a truck.

The 38-year-old husband and father of two was on duty---directing traffic along a detour route in Conway around the collapsed Skagit River Bridge.

"He risked his life to keep people safe. It's amazing," said Jayden Fullerton, a 9-year-old boy from Stanwood.

The outpouring of support from even strangers, is uplifting in this time of sorrow.

"It's the only thing I can do, the least I can do as a citizen to show my respect for the officer," Joseph DeLaurentis said.

Family members of State Patrol officers were there too, showing support.

"My dad is a state patrolman, so is my brother, and my other brother's in communications," Brooke Muzzy said. "We show our support and we're all one big happy family."

The State Patrol and trooper O'Connell's family are planning a memorial service that will be open to the public. The details are expected to be announced early this week.