Pennsylvania trooper killed in crash on I-95 in Philadelphia was also local fire chief

Branden T. Sisca, one of two Pennsylvania State Troopers killed along with a civilian in a crash on I-95, was remembered Monday not only for his companionship but for a devotion to a career in public service. 

"It’s very hard to get your head around, these men and women they go to work every day to protect him to serve the community for the benefit of all of us," Beth Ann Bittner-Mazza, a family friend told FOX 29. 

Sisca, 29, and fellow trooper Matin F. Mack III, 33, responded to a call of a person walking on I-95 near the Broad Street exit in South Philadelphia early Monday morning. 

The troopers made contact with the man, who was walking in the left-hand lane of I-95. As the troopers attempted to put the man into custody and walk him back to their vehicle, a female driver in an SUV struck all three men and their patrol car at a high rate of speed.

Authorities say the impact was so great that it sent the troopers into the northbound lanes of I-95. The striking vehicle eventually came to a rest in the right shoulder after it struck the troopers, civilian, police SUV and left-hand barrier. The driver remained on the scene. 

Dispatch called for backup when Troopers Mack and Sisca did not respond on their radios. Backup arrived as witnesses attempted CPR on the troopers. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

An outpouring condolences followed in the wake of the deadly crash, including from Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf who offered his prayers and called the crash a "tragedy."

Sisca started his career as a state trooper last year and was recently named fire chief of the Trappe Fire Company in Montgomery County, where he had volunteered for more than a decade. His department grieved his loss on Monday.

"Our community is grieving at the loss of our brother," Deputy Fire Chief John Bolger said. "It's a very close community here that we're all part of this, and we're all grieving today." 

Sisca was a husband and a father-to-be. 

"He was born and raised to help others he was doing his job it’s such a sad, sad day," Steve Carcarey, a family friend, said.

Both Sisca and Mack were organ donors, and donated organs to the Gift of Life Program, according to a release from the Pennsylvania State Troopers Association.

"Hugging and kissing your loved ones as they walk out the door not sure whether they’ll be at the end of the day this is for proof of that this is a dangerous job all those men and women love doing," Bittner-Mazza said.



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