WORCESTER, Mass. (WHDH) — The State Police Academy held their graduation Thursday, where some of the newest members of the force spoke with 7News about how they were honoring the memory of loved ones.

Trooper Ross Weddleton was one of the newest troopers who graduated Thursday. He is the son of late Sgt. Douglas Weddleton, who was killed in the line of duty in 2010 when he was struck by a car while working a construction detail.

“I thought about him through the 116 days of training. That’s kind of what pushed me to get to this point. I know he’d be proud of me to be here,” said Weddleton, whose older brothers Mark and Stephen are also troopers.

“There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t worry but you can’t let that guide you,” said Weddleton’s mother, Judy Weddleton. She said if her husband was with them at the graduation, he would tell her, “We did a good job.”

Trooper Stephanie Devlin, who also graduated Thursday, is the daughter of a lieutenant. Her late mother was also a trooper and died of cancer when Devlin was young. Devlin said she carried a picture of her mother with her every day of her training.

“I think she’d be very proud. She probably is glad she inspired somebody to follow in her footsteps,” said Devlin.

In total, 174 troopers graduated on Thursday. Among the graduates were eight women and many military veterans.

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