Senior Constable Kevin King, 50, died alongside Leading Senior Constable Lynette Taylor, Constable Josh Prestney and Constable Glen Humphris when they were hit by a large refrigerated truck in Kew on Wednesday night.
Stationed at Nunawading Highway Patrol, he had earlier arrived at the scene with Con Prestney who was on placement after the other two officers made the decision to impound a Porsche allegedly seen speeding.
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Sen Constable King’s partner, Sharron Mackenzie, and sons Henry, Williams and James released a statement through Victoria Police on Monday night.
“Kevin was from a very close-knit family and this is such a devastating shock for all of us,” it reads.
“Our hearts are so broken.”
It said policing “was something Kevin seemed almost destined to do as “he was methodical, very well organised and loved camaraderie”.
“He loved going to work, it was his home away from home,” the statement says.
Ms Mackenzie wrote: “From the perspective of being Kevin’s partner, my heart is in pieces; I’m totally devastated. My beautiful man, my life, my rock and my only love for 35 years is gone and life will never be the same.”
His three sons said they will miss so much about their father.
“Not least going to the football with him, kicking the footy, or just joking with him and listening to his slightly daggy dad jokes,” the statement says.
“He would also watch Highway Patrol where he would often tell good stories about his colleagues that would appear on the show, they were his mates, part of his family.”
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Sen Constable King is remembered as a lifelong supporter of Richmond Football Club, a passionate guitarist and a lover of good food.
“He’d be strumming on the guitar at every opportunity; he’d often go outside with his coffee and the guider in the sunshine,” the family statement reads.
“We gifted Kevin a long-awaited guitar amplifier for his 50th birthday in February this year to keep feeding that passion, despite the fear that our family room would turn into a music studio!”
Ms Mackenzie and the three boys expressed sincere thanks to their extended family and friends, Victoria Police and the community for the overwhelming support “during this incredibly difficult and sad time”.
“We feel great empathy for the families and friends of Joshua, Glen and Lynette who are going through this with us,” the statement says.
Porsche driver Richard Pusey, 41, has been charged with a number of offences including reckless conduct endangering life and failing to render assistance. He has been remanded in custody and is due to face court again in July.
Truck driver Mohinder Singh Bajwa, 47, appeared briefly in court today on charges of culpable driving.
The four fallen officers will be farewelled at small, separate funerals which will be live-streamed due to the state’s coronavirus gathering restrictions, Victoria Police Chief Commissioner Graham Ashton said on Friday.
“We’re starting the planning on a larger memorial service with full police honours,” he said.
Mr Ashton said it will have to be at a time when it is “safe to do so and healthy to do so”.
“But we have certainly kicked off the planning to make that happen,” he said.