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Fallen CHP officer gets portion of Highway 1 dedicated to him

Posted: Wednesday, Aug 21st, 2013

Jean Hoover helps unveil a new freeway memorial sign for her father-in-law, Donald Hoover, Wednesday at the Santa Cruz area California Highway Patrol office. (Photo by Tarmo Hannula/Register-Pajaronian)

APTOS — Nearly eight decades after a head-on collision killed a California Highway Patrol officer, he was honored Wednesday as the California Highway Patrol dedicated a four-mile stretch of Highway 1 to him.

The “CHP Officer Albert Donald Hoover Memorial Freeway” runs from Branciforte Drive to Park Avenue.

Albert Donald Hoover was killed on Aug. 31, 1934 in a head-on collision with an oncoming truck as he rode his motorcycle home on a stretch of Highway 1 which was then known as “Slaughterhouse Curve” and is now Soquel Drive near Mission Drive.

He left behind his 5-year-old son, as well as his wife and mother.

“In his sacrifice, a family lost its husband, father and son, the CHP lost a dedicated officer and the people of California lost a hero,” said Santa Cruz area CHP Captain Paul Vincent.

Hoover’s son, Richard Hoover, who was 84 when he died last year of brain cancer, received a plaque in May 2012 from the CHP at his Seascape home.

In his final days, Richard Hoover requested that the plaque — a miniature version of the highway sign — be buried with him.

“He was completely overwhelmed,” said Jean Hoover, Richard Hoover’s wife, of the plaque. “He knew he wouldn’t be here for this unveiling, and it meant so much to him.”

For the complete article see the 08-22-2013 issue.

Click here to purchase an electronic version of the 08-22-2013 paper.

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