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Texas DPS dedicates portion of I-35 to fallen trooper

Thomas Nipper was killed during a traffic stop in November 2017.
Credit: 6 News

BELL COUNTY, Texas — The Texas Department of Public Safety held a dedication ceremony for a part of I-35 to honor a fallen DPS trooper.

The department dedicated the road portion for DPS Trooper Thomas Nipper, who was killed during a traffic stop on November 4, 2017. 

"He served the citizens of Texas longer than I've been alive. I'm 43, about to be 44, and he served two-thirds of his life wearing a badge and a gun and protecting total strangers and that was his calling," said Sgt. Bryan Washko with Texas DPS.

The Trooper Thomas Nipper Memorial Highway, created by the 87th Texas Legislature, consists of a section of I-35 from Temple to Belton in Bell County from mile markers 297 to 294. 

"Trooper Nipper heroically put his life on the line to protect this community, and he will always be remembered for his unwavering commitment to the people of Texas," DPS Central Texas Regional Director Todd Snyder said. "This memorial roadway will serve as a constant reminder of his courageous and faithful service."

Amy Nipper Schmoyer said she will always remember her Dad as incredibly funny, outgoing and caring. She hopes you'll honor her Dad with on his stretch of road by honoring those who serve.

"Officers everyday are putting their life on the line for us and they don't know when they go to work if they are going to come home. They do it for the love of their family and community but it's their higher calling and their willing to make that sacrifice," she said.

Nipper, 63, died in November 2017 from injuries sustained in a crash while conducting a traffic stop on southbound I-35, near Midway Drive, in Temple. He joined the DPS in 1982 and was stationed in Temple at the time of his death. 

Nipper is survived by his wife and three children. 

Credit: Texas DPS