A man critically injured Wednesday when his sports car was crushed in an accident on Rte. 95 in Fairfax County was identified yesterday as John V. Simmons, 23, who fulfilled a dream by becoming a Virginia state trooper a month ago.
Simmons, described by his fellow officers as "an outstanding recruit" and a "model trooper," was returning to work after spending a brief New Year's holiday with his family in South Boston, Va., when the collision occurred on I-95 near Rte. 123. A racecar trailer broke loose from a southbound car on I-95, hit thhe highway's median strip and flipped into Simmon's Corvette, according to police.
It took 45 minutes and power tools for rescue workers to free Simmons from the wreckage, according to State Trooper Perry Campbell.
Simmons was reported suffering from massive head injuries in the surgical intensive care unit of the Washington Hospital Center, where he was taken by a U.S. Park Police helicopter.
Police identified the driver of the car that had been towing the trailer as Robert H. Rossman, 27, of Wessex Lane in Alexandria. Cause of the accident is under investigation.
Simmons, a 1978 graduate of Virginia Tech majoring in public administration, was called "a model trooper . . . the kind of young man you want in this type of work" by his fellow troopers at the state police office in Alexandria yesterday.
Trooper K. R. Redden recalled that Simmons' father "was a lieutenant with the South Boston police and it was his life's dream to become a trooper. His first day of duty was only a month ago on December 3rd."
Simmons was called outstanding by Sgt. Donald W. MacKenzie of the State Police Academy in Richmond. "He graduated the program in late November with a 95 grade average that was just a few percentage points from the top of his class," MacKenzie said.