NEGAUNEE, Mich. (WZMQ) – Since the Michigan State Police began in 1917, their mission and oath have been to “preserve, protect and defend” the Constitution, the honor and traditions of the Michigan State Police, and the public safety of the people of Michigan. In 1993, The Michigan State Troopers Assistance Fund was formed by the by the Michigan State Police Troopers Association to offset the financial burden that may fall upon law enforcement when tragedy strikes while serving in the line of duty.
Thomas Kinnunen, knowing the dangers of being Michigan State Trooper, told us, “Inherently dangerous job, we carry guns with us and sometimes we have to drive fast, so very risky job. And sometimes bad things happen to us, we get injured and or we die.”
And for these men and women who unselfishly put themselves in danger’s way, when misfortune hits, the aftermath dependent upon the severity can leave quite the financial burden upon the fallen officer and their families. Kinnunen recalling a misfortune of someone he knew and share, “A classmate of mine died in the line of duty in a motorcycle crash downstate and he was married, and he had kids, and I believe this MSTAF assisted that family after the in line of duty death.”
Giving peace of mind to many who have benefited from this program, many troopers have seen how much this program has helped many of their colleagues and regularly contribute to the fund out of each paycheck. And although officers understand the daily dangers of their job, Kinnunen says many are fortunate to never need such a fund and he added, “But it’s something people that people don’t really appreciate it until their in that situation unfortunately.”
This program gives the community an opportunity to give back those who without hesitation protect our state and we as a community may support those who protect us through this program, giving them something they can rely on just as we can rely on them.
To learn more about the fund and the ways you can contribute, please go here.