Stretch Of I-95 Memorializes Fallen Trooper
Two new signs were put up on Interstate 95 this month. They read “Trooper Kimberly Ann Hurd Memorial Highway” to remember Florida's first female trooper killed in the line of duty 22 years ago.
Kimberly grew up in North Collins, New York. Her mother Beverly Boltz says her daughter was a private person with an adventurous side.
“She was always independent. If she said she was going to do something she'd do it," says Beverly. "As a small child, I'd find her up in a tree or hanging out from a branch.”
Cheryl Boltz, Kimberly's younger sister, says Kimberly wanted to be in law enforcement her whole life.
“I remember this one picture where she was dressed up as a cowboy and had a toy gun,” Cheryl says.
She says her adventurous, tree-climbing sister grew up to do more daring activities.
“It was always things like bungee jumping. She jumped out of an airplane," says Cheryl. "She was just that type of of person.”
Queen Of DUIs
The Boltz family moved to Lake Worth in 1983, but Kimberly stayed behind for her senior year of high school. She came to Florida after her graduation.
Kimberly joined the Florida Highway Patrol when she was 20 years old at a time when there weren’t many female troopers.
In her official trooper portrait, there’s an alertness to Kimberly. Her hair is short, wavy and blond. Her eyes are slate-blue. She looks serious but humble.
“I met her on a traffic stop on I-95 when she had a DUI suspect under arrest," says Thomas Knight, Kimberly's trainee.
Neither he nor Kimberly Hurd’s family know exactly why she made stopping drunk drivers such a personal mission, but she did. In her last three years on the job, Kimberly made 409 DUI arrests.
“Kim was a one-person wrecking crew," says Thomas. "When we would go into the Broward Sheriff's office breathe testing center, they all knew who she was. They loved her and they called her 'The Queen of DUIs.'”
On the night of July 16, 1992, Kimberly pulled over a truck for a routine traffic stop on southbound I-95, just north of Sample Road when a van struck and killed her.
After police arrested the driver of the van that hit Kimberly, they discovered he was drunk.
“When I found out it was a DUI, I’m like that's what she specialized in," says Cheryl. “I'm like ‘How could she have been struck by a drunk driver?’ and I was just angry.”
In the last few years, some of Kimberly Hurd’s family moved back to New York, but were in South Florida this month to help dedicate a stretch of I-95.
Florida Highway Patrol says there will be two signs on I-95 designating the "Trooper Kimberly Ann Hurd Memorial Highway," one near Sample Road and the other on the northern border of Broward County.
The idea came from Kimberly's protege Thomas Knight, who is now Sheriff of Sarasota County.
“That area roadway there named after her, she owned that," says Sheriff Knight. "That was her interstate.”
Beverly Boltz, Kimberly's mother, says she’s overwhelmed by the memorial for her daughter.
“Having the sign there-- that people remember her after all this time,” says Beverly.