ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. - A master sergeant with the Florida Highway Patrol died Saturday night after being struck by a car on Interstate 75 while outside his patrol car, authorities said.
Master Sgt. William Trampass Bishop died of injuries he suffered in the crash in the southbound lanes of I-75 in Alachua County, according to a statement released from Terry Rhodes, executive director of the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, and Col. Gene Spaulding, director of the Highway Patrol.
According to the FHP accident report, Bishop, 52, was in the emergency lane aabout 6:30 p.m. working a previous crash when two cars collided in the center lane of the interstate. One of those cars struck Bishop.
He was taken to UF Shands Hospital in Gainesville, where he died.
"This is a tragedy that highlights the risks that FHP troopers encounter every day as they serve our state," the statement said. "Every member of the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles is grieving with Sgt. Bishop's family during this horrific time."
FHP Sgt. William Bishop, 52, died after being struck by a car on Interstate 75 while outside his patrol car, authorities said
Bishop was a 30-year veteran FHP trooper, authorities said. He also was a U.S. Army veteran and well-known as a compassionate man in his Lake City community.
Grace Life Church pastor Brandon Elixson told News4Jax that Bishop dedicated his life to his work, family, and faith. Elixson said Bishop and his wife were married at his church a few months ago.
“(He was) just a very kind man. A man that would bend over backward to help anyone that was in need, and he will be remembered as that,” Elixson said.
According to the accident report, charges are pending.
"We appreciate all of the support FHP has received and continues to receive," the statement said. "Please keep Sgt. Bishop's wife and son and all members of the Florida Highway Patrol in your thoughts and prayers."
"We are heartbroken to learn of the death of 30-year veteran FHP Trooper Sergeant William Trampas Bishop while on duty in Alachua County. Ann and I are praying for Sergeant Bishop’s family and loved ones during this very difficult time," Gov. Rick Scott said. "Our thoughts are also with the entire Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and Florida Highway Patrol family as they grieve the loss of Sergeant Bishop."
The last FHP officer killed in the line of duty was Trooper Chelsea Richard, who died on May 3, 2014, when she also was struck by a car while investigating a traffic crash on I-75. That crash was in Marion County, about 50 miles south of Saturday night's fatal crash.
Copyright 2017 by WJXT News4Jax - All rights reserved.