On November 2, 2023, a rededication ceremony was held at the Route 11 bridge in the village of Philadelphia, Jefferson County in honor of Fallen Trooper Joel R. Davis. Members from the New York State Police, Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, New York State Park Police, Village of Philadelphia Police Department, and the city of Watertown Police Department, along with elected officials and Davis’s family members, attended the ceremony to honor Davis, who was shot and killed in 2017 while responding to a domestic incident in Theresa. State Police Assistant Deputy Superintendent Lt. Col. Darren S. Pitkin spoke at the ceremony about Trooper Davis’s sacrifice. “Law enforcement is a family with a common shared goal to make the world a better place, and Joel Davis was just that type of person. Joel always focused on the extraordinary. On being an extraordinary trooper, on always doing more than what was expected of him at every turn,” Pitkin said. “It is not how Joel died that made him a hero–but how he lived. When gunfire erupted, Joel ran towards danger and saved the lives of a mother and her two small children. Joel lived to make a difference in this world, and he died as he lived, defending freedom, safeguarding peace, and preserving justice.” “The rededication of this bridge today serves as a reminder of the ultimate sacrifice that Joel Davis made on the evening of July 9, 2017. Joel might not be here physically, today, but his spirit and memory live on in all of us,” he added. State Assemblyman Scott A. Gray also praised Davis’s outstanding character. “Joel was known for his professionalism, integrity, and unwavering commitment to public safety. He stood as the epitome of honor and duty,” Gray said. “Trooper Davis’s legacy extends far beyond his heroic actions on that fateful day. He leaves behind a loving family. His wife Suzanne, and their three children, Trenton, Caden, and Jaila. His parents, Randy and Mary, his brother Josh, and all who will carry his memory in their hearts,” Gray said. “His fellow troopers, law enforcement professionals, and the community he served will always remember him as a remarkable hero with courage and character.” The more than $4 million project replaced the bridge built in the 1950s.
top of page