Good Samaritan tried to help state trooper struck, killed by ‘speeding SUV’

MARYSVILLE, Wash. — A good Samaritan is still shaken up after he pulled over Saturday to help a state trooper who had been fatally struck by a speeding SUV on Interstate 5.

Now, he and others are paying their respects to one of the fallen.

Trooper Christopher Gadd’s sudden death has shocked the Washington State Patrol and the community he swore to serve and protect.

The 27-year-old husband and father is the 33rd WSP trooper killed in the line of duty.

Trooper Gadd was parked on the shoulder on I-5 near Marysville at about 3 a.m. Saturday when a speeding SUV plowed into his vehicle.

A 32-year-old man from Lynnwood was taken into custody and booked into the Snohomish County Jail for vehicular homicide.

KIRO 7 spoke exclusively to a good Samaritan who stopped to help. Ali Asadi says there was nothing he could do to save the trooper, that by then, he was already gone.

Still, he came to the Washington State Patrol district headquarters in Marysville Sunday, along with so many, to show how deeply the trooper’s death has impacted an entire community.

This is especially hard for Asadi, who lives in Mukilteo.

“I don’t want to be on the highways as much right now,” he said.

The chill on the first Sunday in March seemed to match the mood outside the headquarters.

Flags flying at half-staff, a parade of people paying their respects to Gadd, a state trooper many will never know, but whose sudden death is deeply felt.

Kenneth Jakel of Lake Stevens was asked, “What made him come?”

“Respect to the officer, for what they do,” he said, his voice breaking, his three young children standing around him. “You know, father of children.”

“These people put their lives in front of everything for us,” said Lori Wood of Stanwood. “And we need to honor them, you know. And this was senseless. A senseless act.”

Asadi says the SUV sped by him at about 100 mph, then struck what he initially thought was a concrete pillar.

“And as I got closer, I was about to just pass it, slowly,” he said. “I looked to my right and I saw the state patrol vehicle all mangled up in a ditch. And that’s what prompted me to stop.”

A semi driver was calling 911 and directing traffic past the debris.

So, Asadi went over to the trooper, but he couldn’t find any signs of life.

“I was hoping for something good,” Asadi said. “But at the speed that SUV was traveling recklessly like that, it could have been me. It could have been anybody. I don’t know how long he was on the road.”

Now he wants his family to know the trooper did not die alone.

“I was really the only one at the window with him,” he said, “until help arrived.”

And when that help arrived, again, Asadi says, there was nothing that could be done to save Trooper Gadd.

The Washington State Patrol tells us they are working on the details for a final goodbye to the trooper, gratified by the expression of love from a devastated community.