WESTPORT — He was remembered for his infectious laugh, his love of the Patriots and his unending commitment to service through the Connecticut State Police and Marine Corps.
Hundreds of law enforcement officers, state officials, friends and family members gathered at Sherwood Island State Park on Tuesday for the funeral of State Trooper First Class Walter Greene of Norwalk.
“This is the passing of a great man and a great trooper,” said Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, who spoke at the ceremony. “Walter quite clearly would go beyond any service requirement.”
Greene died at age 51 after a two-year fight with cancer, which officials believe was caused by carcinogens Greene encountered at Ground Zero while helping Connecticut families seek information about missing or deceased loved ones in the wake of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in Manhattan. Tuesday’s service and his wake on Monday were held next to a memorial for 9/11 victims.
In his 28 years with the Connecticut State Police, Greene became a master motorcycle instructor, who worked with canine units and was known for his preparation and precision on the job. He served four years in the Marine Corps, where he was a scout sniper, before joining the state police.
Only his smile and his sense of duty shined brighter than his boots and his brass, Col. George F. Battle, commanding officer for the Division of State Police remembered.
“Walter Greene was a beautiful person in every sense of the word,” Battle said.
Greene was born in Stamford and is survived by his wife of 32 years, Suzanne Greene, his three sons, and many other family members, who remembered his charm, warmth and humor. He was predeceased by his daughter, Taylor Ayanna Greene.
A member of the Connecticut’s Traffic Services Unit, more than 200 police formed a profession following funeral vehicles on their way to the cemetery at the end of the funeral. The ceremony closed with a helicopter fly-over and the firing of water cannons by police boats off the coast of Sherwood Island.
A last call with Greene’s officer number was sent over police radios across the state.
“Your brothers and sisters will take the watch from here,” the call told Greene.
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