Florida Highway Patrol (FHP) Trooper Zachary Fink was remembered as a selfless public servant who cared about helping others as law enforcement officials held a memorial service for the 26-year-old killed in the line of duty in a car crash.
Fink died following a Feb. 2 crash while he was pursuing a wrong-way driver on Interstate 95 in Port St. Lucie at 2:40 a.m. Fink crashed into a semitrailer, killing the 55-year-old truck driver. The wrong-way driver, Michael Anthony Addison, 30, has been arrested and faces multiple charges, according to Treasure Coast Newspapers.
“His pursuit of a dangerous felon cost him his life, but there’s no question that his actions saved the lives of other people,” said Gov. Ron DeSantis who spoke during Fink’s funeral in Port St. Lucie.
“We understand how devastating the loss is. It’s a loss for more than just the family. It’s a loss for the FHP community. It’s a loss for this community here on the Treasure Coast and it is a loss for the entire state of Florida.”
Fink had only been on the job for three years.
Fink was engaged to be married to the love of his life, Amanda, his family said.
A photo montage showed Fink, an avid fisherman, holding up a prize catch, riding a roller coaster, proposing to his fiancée and posing with his trooper colleagues in training.
At the age of 6, he said he wanted to help others for a living. Fink was drawn to public service because his father and his brother both served in the military. His father, a U.S. Army veteran, called Fink every morning when Fink got his late-night shift.
As a state trooper, Fink had been deployed to the Texas border and the Florida Keys, his cousin Shea Fink said.
“There are no words to describe the loss and heartache we are all feeling, but we do find solace in the outpouring of support from those of you here today, and those watching abroad,” said Fink, a Palm Beach County Sheriff’s deputy, during the funeral proceedings that were livestreamed Monday morning.
Others in Port St. Lucie paid honor as the funeral procession made its way to Christ Fellowship Church in Port St. Lucie.
“We escorted Trooper Fink following his passing,” Colonel Gary L. Howze II said. “The countless people stopping their daily business. They lined the roadways. They displayed supportive messages, giving a solemn salute, or gesture as the Hearse passed to honor this brave young man and his loved ones. It was truly humbling.”
Flags are flown half-mast until sunset Monday in St. Lucie County Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles in Port St. Lucie, the St. Lucie County Courthouse in Fort Pierce and the City Hall in Port St. Lucie.