Woman Shares Emotional Tribute to Slain Illinois State Patrol trooper

ISP Trooper Tribute

Days after an Illinois state trooper was fatally shot, a woman posted an emotional tribute on social media recalling the time he came to her aid on the side of the road. Cynthia Stanley said she still remembers the time Trooper Nicholas Hopkins helped her on the side of a highway four years ago. Recalling their meeting in a Facebook post Thursday, Stanley wrote about how Hopkins took her to a gas station, filling her tank as the two talked about their families. "During this event he smiled the entire time and talked about his newborn twins and being a doting husband," Stanley wrote, saying she was motivated by the recent tragedy to post her story. "He was excited about seeing his babies grow and being a husband to his wife. He shared some endearing moments and I never forgot him." The post included photos of Stanley and Hopkins together, smiling, as well as two of Hopkins filling the gas tank on Stanley's car. Hopkins, 33, was executing a search warrant earlier this month in East St. Louis when he was fatally shot in an exchange of gunfire, officials said. Hopkins, of Waterloo, was a 10-year veteran of the force and is survived by his wife Whitney and three children: twins Evelyn and Owen, as well as younger sister Emma.  Stanley said one of her colleagues at work read out loud an article about a state trooper being shot - and her mind jumped to Hopkins. "My heart about sunk and my first thought was please don't let it be him. Please don't let it be him. It was him," Stanley wrote. "Tears filled up in my eyes as I continued to read the rest of the article." "This is beyond my understanding," she continued. "He was one of the good ones just making a living like the rest of us and building a legacy for his family. His kindness will forever live within my heart and I thank him." Stanley's post garnered more than 48,000 shares and 15,000 comments as of Thursday morning.