Todd Hanneken

State Trooper Todd ‘Happy’ Hanneken, who died Thursday, is shown in 2018 with Andrew Bergan, the man he helped rescue from a burning vehicle on Interstate 57 in 2018.

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URBANA — Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup said he is awaiting further results “to clarify or complete the final autopsy results” on an Illinois State trooper who was killed in a single-vehicle accident in Bondville last week.

Senior Master Trooper Todd A. Hanneken, 45, of Long Creek, near Mount Zion, died Thursday morning when his squad car struck an electric pole, then a tree. He had been westbound on Illinois 10 in Bondville near County Road 600 East.

He was pronounced dead at Carle Foundation Hospital after being airlifted there.

Northrup said preliminary results from the autopsy performed Friday are pending additional laboratory testing and medical evaluation.

“We just have to review all the information that comes in before making a final determination,” Northrup said Monday.

He said that process could take up to two months, although it might take less time because he was a state trooper.

“The toxicology will take us at least 30 days,” he said. “Then the pathologist has to review (the results).”

Northrup said state police continue to investigate the accident.

“I know that they’re not done with it because they contacted us today to ask some information about the autopsy,” he said.

State Police Director Brendan Kelley said Trooper Hanneken was not responding to a call and was “just on patrol.” He said there was nothing “suspicious or nefarious” about the crash.

Trooper Hannegan was a 20-year veteran of the Illinois State Police.

On Saturday, Illinois State Police released a statement from his family.

“Todd Hanneken fulfilled his lifelong dream of becoming an Illinois State Trooper. He never wanted to do anything else in life as his career but be a road trooper. However, this was just his career. It did not define him or fully represent him. His family and friends did. He served and protected for them, and for all of us. He did this in what he would describe as just doing his job. He helped people, often times going above and beyond with no one noticing but that’s what he did.

“He didn’t want the attention and limelight for doing his job. In 2018, he helped save a man from a burning car by jumping on top of the hood and kicking out a windshield. He was quick to point out that it was not “him” but “we” that did that. He could have easily died for someone else he didn’t even know that day and probably a few other days too. But he didn’t. Instead, we were given more time, but unknowingly more time is what we now don’t have. Todd was taken from us suddenly.

“He had plans other than the State Police. There were a million things he was doing, from his vehicle and recreational hobby to updating our house to planning on watching the boys during the high school baseball season to the next time he could get together with family and friends. His community of Mt. Zion and the area meant so much to him. He gave great attention to others and what they needed. He had an infectious laugh and was always the loudest at the party. He was a big kid himself and hardly ever serious! He always made sure our boys and those around him knew he cared for them. He was a tough guy on the outside but a loving, compassionate person inside.

“Thank you everyone that cared about Todd and for Todd. There’s not enough words that we can say about those of you he loved. We want the world to know he was a great husband, father, son, brother, and friend. His legacy will be entrusted in all of us to carry forward. It is this:

“Live your life to honor your loved ones. Hold them tight. Prioritize what matters.

“We don’t know how we are going to move forward, but we know that we are. This is what Todd would want.”

Our County Editor

Dave Hinton is editor of The News-Gazette's Our County section and former editor of the Rantoul Press. He can be reached at dhinton@news-gazette.com.

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