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FR&A Photo Gallery: State Trooper Remembered As ‘Bright Shining Star’

Trooper funeral230

Law enforcement personnel from around the country were in the township June 4 to pay their respects to New Jersey State Trooper Anthony Raspa.


Thousands of law enforcement personnel from around the country converged on St. Matthias R.C. Church June 4 to pay their respects to a New Jersey State Trooper killed last week in an auto accident.

The funeral service for Trooper Anthony Raspa, 24, drew comrades from as far away as California, and dignitaries such as Gov. Chris Christie, Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno and former Gov. James McGreevey.

Raspa was a Highland Park resident, but he attended St. Matthias School and his family are parishioners of the church.

Det. Paul Pappas Jr. of the North Brunswick Police Department, a cousin of Raspa’s, described the trooper as “the bright shining star of our family.”

“In his very short life, he did a tremendous amount,” Pappas said before the funeral Mass. “He was a great-looking kid, athletic, had everything going for him. But he was an extremely humble young man. He never was cocky at all, always had a smile on his face.”

Pappas said he mentored his younger cousin and helped him get into law enforcement.

“My fondest memories would be of Anthony when he wrestled in high school,” Pappas said. “He had a tremendous heart, tremendous athleticsicm and he would never quit. He was only about 150 pounds, but he had the heart of a 250-pound linebacker.”

Col. Rick Fuentes, the State Police superintendent, said that Raspa “had really the promise of an incredible career, he was a creative writer, was in outstanding physical shape, he had hobbies, he was an artist, he painted, he drew and he could have been so mch in his career.”

“We’re going to celebrate his life and although he was only in our organization a very short anount of time, that’s something we value very much,” Fuentes said. “He already made his mark and he left his legacy.”

Speaking of the turnout by law enforcement for the funeral, Fuentes said, “It really is an unbelievable display of support and we appreciate that.”

State Trooper Anthony Raspa Funeral

 

 

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