Truckers Tragically Killed While Rendering Aid to Crash Victims Posthumously Honored
Alexandria, VA – Two truckers who were killed while stopping to help at the scene of a serious accident over the 4th of July weekend have been posthumously named “Highway Angels” by the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA).
Adam “Troy” Miller, 53, of Hagerstown, MD, and Ashish Patel, 46, of Ontario, Canada, were recognized by the trade association last week following their sacrifice, stemming from a July 1 tragedy on Interstate 81 in Martinsburg, WV.
As Transportation Nation Network (TNN) first reported, the two men stopped and attempted to render aid to crash victims around 7:20 a.m.
As they did, a Nissan Pathfinder driven by Jason Hooper, 47, of Martinsburg, WV, lost control of his vehicle, hydroplaned and traveled through the grassy median.
Hooper’s Pathfinder struck a tractor-trailer at the scene, along with fatally striking Miller and Patel.
Read more about the fatal incident HERE.
Miller was a professional driver for Thurmont, MD-based Portner Trucking while Patel drove for Winnipeg, Manitoba-based Bison Transport.
Speaking with TCA, Miller’s widow, Julie, said her husband had been a trucker for 28 years and was on his way to work the morning of the incident.
She told TCA she wasn’t surprised to learn he had pulled over to help upon seeing the accident on I-81, as he “always pulled over to help someone” in need.
“I’d rather him be here, but I can’t really be mad because it’s what he was always going to do,” Julie told local news outlet The Herald-Mail. “He was always going to get out of that truck. He saw an accident where things were mangled. He was always going to get out of that truck to go see if he could help out. So he died doing what lots of people wouldn’t have done.”
On Saturday, August 7, Julie picked up her husband’s ashes from the funeral home and rode in a semi — driven by Portner Trucking’s owner, Randy Portner — to the house in Hagerstown she shared with her husband.
Miller was then honored with a 15-truck convoy that passed by the house on Mitchell Avenue, as Julie held her husband’s ashes and watched in awe and gratitude as friends and colleagues paid their final respects.
Patel’s widow, Shilpa, told TCA her husband “enjoyed being a professional truck driver and always accepted challenges that came his way.”
Patel immigrated to Canada from India in 2010 and “didn’t speak a word of English,” Shilpa recalled.
He quickly learned and was soon helping others who aspired to become a professional driver.
“He helped others get their licenses and learn about the job,” Shilpa said. “He always encouraged people. He always shared the good points about the driving life.”
Read more about Miller and Patel on the TCA Highway Angels website HERE.
In recognition of being named Highway Angels, TCA presented the families of Miller and Patel a certificate, patch, lapel pin, and truck decals.
In addition, Portner and Bison also received a letter acknowledging their drivers as Highway Angels.
At the time of their deaths, Miller had been a driver with Portner for ten years, with Patel driving for Bison for four years.