Trooper killed in 2001 crash honored with Waco highway dedication

Richard Cottle.jpg
Posted at 4:35 PM, Jan 12, 2023
and last updated 2023-01-12 17:35:31-05

WACO, Texas — A section of I-35 between mile markers 342 and 352 in McLennan County was dedicated Thursday to a 51-year-old state trooper who died in a four-vehicle crash on May 9, 2001.

The 87th Texas Legislature created the Trooper Richard Cottle Highway.

DPS Director Steven McCraw joined members of Cottle’s family, troopers, area law enforcement, and state and local officials at the dedication held at Extraco Events Center in Waco.

“We must never forget those who risk their lives each day to keep us safe,” McCraw said in a news release. “Trooper Cottle was an honorable man who dedicated his life to serving others, and we are proud to be able to dedicate this highway in his honor so that we may always remember his life and legacy.”

“Trooper Cottle 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 Regional Director Vincent Luciano said in the release. “This memorial roadway will serve as a reminder to the public of his sacrifice in order to protect theirs.”

According to DPS, Cottle joined DPS in 1971. He was stationed in Marlin after finishing the Highway Patrol Academy.

“Cottle had numerous commendations and was known for his investigative proficiency in document fraud,” the release said, noting he joined vehicle inspections in 1997.

Cottle was stationed in Waco at the time of his death, DPS said.