RALEIGH, N.C. – State Employees Credit Union members are providing funding for the purchase of new service units to be used by the North Carolina Troopers Association/North Carolina State Highway Patrol (NCTA/NCSHP) Caisson Unit. The funding will be provided via the SECU Foundation.
The new vehicles will provide increased capacity to safely transport Caisson Unit horses, personnel, and equipment to funeral ceremonies for North Carolina law enforcement officers and firefighters killed in the line of duty. This effort will also support NCTA/NCSHP’s goal to make this same service available to the North Carolina National Guard and other fallen military soldiers. The Caisson Unit not only serves its home state of North Carolina with distinction, but also serves its four bordering states of Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee.
The Caisson is a horse-drawn military wagon that is used to transport a funeral casket. Dating back to its Civil War origins for carrying ammunition, wounded and deceased soldiers, the wagon is well-known for its use at Arlington National Cemetery where it has carried fallen soldiers and former United States Presidents to their final resting place.
An organization operated by volunteer troopers, the NCTA/NCSHP Caisson Unit is a partnership that together provides the professionalism to fulfill its mission to honor the families of the fallen member. In 2008, the SECU Foundation provided funding for the horse trailer to help the troopers with its mission. SECU Foundation’s additional financial support comes at a time when the Unit’s requests for service are steadily increasing.
Jim Barber, SECU Foundation Board Chair states, “SECU members are extremely proud to support the dedicated and noble service that the Caisson Unit provides to families of fallen law enforcement officers, firefighters, and military personnel. Honoring those who serve and protect the citizens of our State is a privilege and truly embodies the service of the SECU Foundation.”
NCTA/NCSHP Caisson Unit President, Trooper Tim Tarleton comments, “Our mission is to provide a service of dignity and respect for the family of a fallen hero. Receiving no state funding, the Caisson Unit operates solely with volunteer and individual contributions. Members of the Unit donate their personal time, outside of their full-time duties as a sworn officer. We are thankful for SECU Foundation’s partnership to help us continue our mission of service.”