Knox County, Tenn. (WVLT/THP) - NASHVILLE --- A Tennessee State Trooper died Friday while on duty in the Knoxville District. Trooper Michael Slagle, 53, passed away from what appears to have been natural causes after he crashed on Longmire Road in Knox County shortly before 7 a.m. this morning. He was discovered unresponsive and was unable to be revived at the scene.
“Trooper Slagle was a 26-year veteran of the Tennessee Highway Patrol. He was a model trooper and a good man. It is a very sad day for our Highway Patrol family and all who knew Michael,” Colonel Tracy Trott said. “Our prayers go out to his family during this difficult time,” Trott added.
When Rural Metro responded to the crash their fire truck also slipped on the ice and landed on top of Slagle's cruiser.
"We're grief stricken," Rural Metro Chief Jerry Harnish told us, "we can only wish our sincere condolenses to the family. What a terrible tragedy."
Trooper Slagle joined the Tennessee Highway Patrol in 1986. Originally from Grainger County, he was initially assigned to Campbell County. During his tenure, he served in both Union and Knox Counties before his current assignment in the Supreme Court detail in Knox County.
Trooper Slagle became a field training officer in 2000. Outside of his duties as a state trooper, he also helped provide security for the University of Tennessee marching band in 2003.
Prior to becoming a state trooper, Trooper Slagle served as a Deputy Sheriff for the Grainger County Sheriff’s Office from 1978-1985.
He is a 1978 graduate of Rutledge High School in Grainger County.
Trooper Slagle is survived by his wife, two daughters and one son. Funeral arrangements are pending at this time.