Tillamook Police Department Detective Nick Troxel recently joined the board of directors at the Oregon Fallen Badge Foundation. He is a longtime member of the organization’s line-of duty death response team and has nearly 20 years of law enforcement experience.
The Oregon Fallen Badge Foundation was founded in the spring of 2011 by several law enforcement honor guard members and police survivors to support the planning and execution of law enforcement memorial services throughout the state, ensuring fallen officers are honored for their sacrifice.
Tillamook Police Chief Terry Wright, a 43-year law enforcement veteran, is also a member of the line-of-duty death response team. If a law enforcement death occurs, Wright and Troxel will drop what they are doing and roll out, providing support and service to the fallen officer’s family in the greatest time of need.
Each member of the response team has a branch of responsibilities. Wright is considered a traffic control expert, and Troxel is responsible for scouting venues for funeral services.
“None of what I do is about me; it’s truly about my service,” Troxel said. “From a young age, service has been instilled in me.”
The logistics of responding to a service death are important. The slightest detail could be the one thing a family remembers, good or bad. At Tillamook Police Department, there is stockpile of necessities from traffic cones to white gloves and more for the response team. Local officers have been offered informative packets about line-of-duty death, response checklists are in each patrol vehicle, and major crimes protocol has been established.
What’s more, an American flag sits in the Tillamook Police Department and another in Troxel’s patrol vehicle, both with a single purpose – to be draped over the body of a fallen officer, star field over the left shoulder.
Troxel said Oregon Fallen Badge Foundation has a focus on preparation and details because there is just one chance to get things right. When a tragedy occurs, emotions will be running high, and that’s not the time for making plans. Everything has to be ready. Troxel added that the response team is comprised of uniquely capable individuals who work well together, recognizing the strengths and weaknesses of each other.
Members of Oregon Fallen Badge Foundation conduct mock line-of-duty death drills and perform mock services as part of the preparation system. Troxel said even those practice runs bring up heavy, heartfelt thought about the reality of law enforcement service. As a board member, he will remain active on the response team as well.
The need to move quickly means the team could use an enclosed trailer, and a fundraiser is ongoing with the assistance of the Rotary Club of Tillamook. A recent casino night held at the Tillamook Elks was a fundraiser for the trailer project. A grant opportunity is also being explored.
Troxel began his law enforcement career in 1995, volunteering as a Corvallis Police cadet. In 2000, he was hired by Oregon State Police as a Fish & Wildlife cadet working in the Tillamook area. Around 2002, he was hired part-time as a crime prevention specialist with the City of Corvallis Police Department. He was later hired full-time as a patrol officer at the Corvallis Police Department.
Troxel came to Tillamook Police Department in 2003. He has served as a field training officer, taser instructor, training manager, firearms instruction, bloodborne pathogens instructor, school resource officer, child abuse detective, narcotics detective, homeless liaison, and a member of the multi-agency Major Crimes Team. He is also the “Every 15 Minutes” coordinator, a high school driving awareness program.
Troxel also serves on the board of directors of the Tillamook School District, board of directors for Helping Hands Re-Entry, current member and past president of the Rotary Club of Tillamook, and past president, and founding board member for Auggie’s Hope. He feels a propose in protecting the vulnerable aspects of society.
When not at work or volunteering, Troxel enjoys spending time with his beautiful wife and their two boys. His family keeps him busy and he absolutely loves it. Having a horse, two 4-H pigs, 12 chickens, a dog and four koi fish, that can keep a person busy.