Photos: Honoring one of their own

The Enterprise — Michael Koff

Standing before the grave of Harold C. Mattice, in Berne’s Woodlawn Cemetery on Monday, April 28, Charles A. Di Santo reads the story of Mattice’s life and death. Raised in Berne, Mattice was a blacksmith, like his father before him, when he first joined the State Police in 1917, the year it was founded. Corporal Mattice was shot dead on April 28, 1923 — the first State Trooper to die by gunfire — while investigating a barn fire in Morris, N.Y. He was 33, and left behind a pregnant wife and a son. His new granite gravestone says, “He gave his life in the line of duty.”

The Enterprise — Michael Koff

Hero’s salute: With black mourning bands over their badges, members of the Albany County Sheriff’s Office join State Troopers and officials at a ceremony on Monday morning, dedicating a new gravestone for Harold C. Mattice on the 91st anniversary of his death. Fred Peter Bassler alerted The Enterprise last year to the deteriorated condition of Mattice’s grave. Thomas Mungeer, president of the NYS Trooper Police Benevolent Association, said the granite stone cost “upwards of  $1,000 and the PBA secured funding from a couple of anonymous donors.” Mungeer noted last fall, when the stone was installed, “Now future generations will know that, when they pass this spot, they will be in the presence of a hero.”

With black mourning bands over their badges, members of the Albany County Sheriff’s Office join State Troopers and officials at a ceremony on Monday morning, dedicating a new gravestone for Harold C. Mattice on the 91st anniversary of his death.