Family, Friends & Fellow Officers Remember...

Trooper Mark Hunter Coates

South Carolina Highway Patrol, South Carolina

End of Watch Friday, November 20, 1992

Leave a Reflection

Reflections for Trooper Mark Hunter Coates

I just recently finished the Louisiana State P.O.S.T. Academy through the Lafourche Parish Sheriff's Office. The videotape of Trooper Coates was a part of the training. Alot of my other classmates before seeing the video had taken the thought of being a Peace Officer lightly until we actually saw the footage. About 90% of the class had tears in their eyes. I had never experienced anything in my life that hit my heart so hard. Trooper Coates is an inspiration to me, because of the neverending battle for his life , that he never gave up. He will always be in my memory and while on my tour of duty he shall be in my heart. He is truly my inspiration.


Dep. Terence Bechet
St. Charles Parish Sheriff's Office, Hahnville, La.

I think almost everybody in my company in my NYPD academy class had moist eyes after watching the Trooper Coates video. I felt physically sick after watching it. Rest in Peace Trooper Coates

P.O. Dore'

I saw the Trooper Coates video several times and words cannot express the feeling that came over myself and the entire room as we watched the horrific video. You are a hero in so many ways. Look down on us and protect us always. You will be remembered always troop.

State Trooper
New Jersey State Police

I, too have seen the video of Mark's vehicle stop and it too
gave me the chills and teared me up. My thoughts are with your family Mark, and your story is one that we will never forget. You are a blessing to the shield and i'm proud you share my last name and we'll keep watch for you now.
Be in Peace my Brother.

D.W. Coates

PTL David W Coates
Ridley Park Police Dept

I cannot say anything that has not already been said by the countless numbers of people who have watched the video of Trooper Coates.
I watched it in our academy and not one of us felt the same afterwards. All of us were saddened to watch the untimely end of a man who performed his duties to the very end.
Trooper Coates personified the word "hero". He kept fighting until he could not anymore.
Rest in peace, Tooper Coates. May God keep you as one of His own.......


In my 7 years of law enforcement I have seen many Officers last moments of life sadly caught on tape. However I like many others was especialy touched my the video of Trooper Coates. I am not sure exactly why except for maybe the fact that through it all Trooper Coates never quit.
Lets face it Mark won the gunfight but ultimately lost the battle. You did just what you were trained and never backed down.
I have long admired the memory braclets I have seen worn by many Officers but for a long time I avoided getting one. Yesterday I finally recieved my memorial bracelt bearing the name Mark Hunter Coates SCHP EOW 11-20-92.
I never knew you but I think about you everyday. You and your memory protect me while on the street. Thank you

Greensboro Police

Officer Coates,
I met you five years ago, one early August morning during my first day at the police academy. I did not know of the name Mark Coates when I awoke at 05:30 that morning to begin class, but by lunch time that day, you changed my life, as well as 26 other lives that were present with me. The first assignment, on the very first day of the 72'nd Law Enforcement basic class was to watch a training video, and write down our thoughts on it. This particular training video consisted of the most horrific thing that I have ever witnessed in my life. And unfortunately, by the videos end, we had lost a brother. Officer Coates, I am leaving this reflection to let you know that your bravery and strong will has changed my life forever. I never knew you personally, but feel as if I have known you all my life in my heart. I think of you and your loved ones on a daily basis, and like so many others I have viewed on this particular website, I just wish that the Lord would have put me there with you in your time of need. God Bless you and your family Mark Coates. Even those of us who don't know you personally, still miss you my brother.

Wise Police Dept./ Virginia

To the Family of Tpr. Coates

I have seen this video countless times and I have had tears in my eyes each time. I have seen several other videos of officers being killed and for some reason Tpr. Coate's video hits me harder than any other. I'm sure that every officer in the nation has seen the video and has learned something from it. I hope that in some small way knowing this can help to ease your pain.


Kentucky State Police

Rest in Peace Brother...12 years following your death, you continue to save lives. You will never be forgotten


GOD SPEED WARRIOR SEMPER FI The words US MARINES Live by and set examples in what ever they do It is Latin and means Always Faithful To God,Country,Corps For the loved ones left behind I cry for your loss I am a battle hardened Marine that never felt so bad as I did when I watched Mark's video. My prayers and respect are with you and your son. GOD SPEED WARRIOR


To all of Trooper Coates family and friends,

Trooper Coates may be the most well-known State Trooper out there. It's unfortunate that it's becuase of his untimely death. As you can see, his in-car video has become a mainstay in police academies and training sessions across the counry. I hope you find ocmfort in the fact that his death will not be in vain, and I'm sure that he has saved other police officer's lives who have seen that video.

I tear up, even now, just thinking about it. And because of it, I take NOTHING for granted.

Thank you Trooper Coates for your sacrifice. Rest in peace, Brother.

Glassboro PD (NJ)

This man was, is, and always will be a true hero.
God Bless you and your family.





As others who have left a reflection, I too have seen the video of Trooper Coates' last traffic stop. While I was watching the video I was sick to my stomach and my heart felt like it was going to break. I was filled with anger, sadness, surprise, and sorrow. As Trooper Coates had done, I would have never thought Blackburn to be a threat until it was too late. Trooper Coates you are one of the bravest men I have ever seen in my life and your life and attitude has given me the courage to stand up to the fears out there on the road and also to look at everyone as if they can kill me.
My heart-felt prayers and thoughts are with the Coates family and I wish them the very best. Trooper Coates is an inspiration to all of us. Thank you Mark. Rest in Peace and God Bless

Eric Schmidt
Erin Police Department

Rest in peace brother.

Police Officer
Denver Police Department

Its been several yrs since I saw the video of Trp Coates Last traffic stop. I have never forgotten it and each time Im out on a traffic stop myself I take a second to reflect on the video before stepping out of my patrol car and approaching the vehicle I've just stop. It runs through my mind constently and It has reminded me to never take a stop for granted, and to watch every thing!

To the family of Trp Coates, my prayers go out to you. God bless and God speed. Trp. Coates may you rest in peace knowing the lives that you have saved.

Blessed are the Peacemakers.....

Deputy Loonsfoot
Marquette County Sheriff's Office, Michigan

Today is Monday Feburary 17, 2003. My self and the rest of the Basic Academy Class #60 at Alvin Community College watched the video of Trooper Coates horrible murder. By the end of the video we all had our hears in our throats. It is a tragedy that he died the way he did and all over a little bit of marijuana. He had no warning of the subjects violent action and I guess it will help all of us to see how quickly things can go bad. Our class wishes to send our condolences to his family. And to Trooper Coates Thank You For Your Sacrafice.

Robert Powers Class Capt.
Alvin Community College Academy

In your death, so many have lived!


There is no way I can adequately thank all of you who have left messages about Mark. To know that viewing the video of his death has helped save lives is a great comfort to me and helps to give some meaning to a senseless act of violence. Even though it has been ten years since his death, the pain is still there and always will be. But reading your tributes always lifts my spirit, and I wanted all of you to know how much I appreciate your taking the time to write such beautiful thoughts. All of you in law enforcement are very special to me and I will keep you in my prayers. Be safe.

Beverly Coates
Mark's Mother

During the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Academy the training video of your car stop was shown. Many people left the room on the brink of tears, I was one of them. I felt sadness and anger as I viewed the video. Althoug tragic, the training video is as real as it gets. It displays the raw bravery and will to survive you had, I honor you for that, as does anyone who sees the video. God Bless You and your Family.

Patrolman B. Flannigan
Emporia, KS Police Department

Even though your gone Trooper, you and your family may never know the many lives youve saved because of your passing. The video made me angry, but taught myself and my fellow cadets more than we could learn in any class. "Ridgeland R-21" is a call sign I know we will never forget. Thank You for all youve done for so many Trooper Coates.

Cadet Johnny Whisenant
Capital Area Law Enforcement Academy

Trooper Coates,

It was hard to watch the events unfold with the video of you fighting for your life and the tragic outcome on that night on I-95. At the time I saw it, I was a Police Trainee, class B.L.E. 209, School Of Justice Police Academy in Florida. When the video ended, my class, including myself, were silent with grief and tears. It was an eye opener for all of us on what police work is really all about.
Now that I’m on the road, every time I hear a fellow officer make a traffic stop, I make every effort to back him or her up. I feel it’s my duty to do so. I’m not just protecting person and property, but I am also protecting my brothers in blue. I thank you for showing me to never give up, no matter how dangerous the situation is. I thank you for your courage under the pressure of possible losing your life. And most of all, I thank you for being an inspiration to myself and anyone else who had seen what you had gone through on that terrible night.
Rest in peace Brother in Blue, you will never be forgotten. My prayers go to you and your family.

Ofc. Barnes
North Miami Beach Police Dept. FL

It has been over 4 years ago since I watched the video of Trooper Coates last traffic stop. It is burned into my memory, and I will never forget the price Trooper Coates paid.

Sharon Woodruff
BI, Inc. Probation

Trooper Coates death was extremely tragic and will not be forgotten. Rest in peace.

Iowa State Patrol

Almost 2 years have gone by since I, too, saw the video in our dispatchers academy. So many do not fully understand the responsiblities that dispatchers are to carry, or the seriousness in them. The shots fired, the cries for help, the fellow officer first on scene's reaction...At that moment it hit me that I didn't ever want to be on the other end of that radio traffic. To Tpr Coates and all officers protecting us, thank you and God Bless.


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