I-85 bridge dedicated to fallen state trooper

By Andy Simmons Staff Reporter

November 11, 2013

Law enforcement and Troup County officials came out to show their appreciation and witness the dedication of a bridge Friday named after fallen trooper John Frank Bass Jr.

The bridge is located right at Exit 28 on Interstate 85 and goes over the highway, at the Hogansville interchange.

“This is much more than the dedication of a bridge,” said Ricky Wolfe, chairman of the Troup County Board of Commissioners.

“It’s a time for us to remember an individual who spent his entire life in public service. He gave the ultimate sacrifice for the well being of his fellow citizens.”

Bass Jr. was born and raised in Hogansville before he left to serve in the military for a brief time. Upon returning to Hogansville, he served two years with the Georgia State Patrol before being killed by a hit-and-run driver on 24th Avenue,west of 5th Street in Cordele, Georgia on Feb. 15th, 1950.

Colonel Mark McDonough says he would like the tradition of naming landmarks after fallen troopers, such as the bridge dedication to Trooper Bass Jr., to continue into the future.

“Over the course of the history of the patrol, we’ve had 27 troopers have died in the line of duty. We’ve taken a page from other states where a line of duty death is recognized by a naming of a bridge or a roadway,” McDonough said.

“When we started down this road, We started with the families and you can see that this is centered around the families.We felt it was appropriate to do this and will continue to do this until every line of duty death is recognized.”

McDonough believes that this ceremony was a reminder to all of those who serve in the line of duty of what their past has been.

“If you don’t know historically where you’ve come from, it’s difficult to find your way into the future,” McDonough said.

“For us as an agency, this is an important thing.”