PITTSTON – As part of her healing process, Angie Miller keeps in touch with the boy saved in the confrontation that led to her husband's death.
Trevor Autenrieth was 9 years old when he was kidnapped by his father, Daniel Autenrieth of Palmer Township, Northampton County. Pennsylvania State Troopers and local law enforcement rescued the boy in Monroe County.
Angie Miller's husband, Trooper Joshua Miller, was killed during the rescue. Trooper Robert Lombardo was shot and recovered.
I speak with his family quite often, Angie Miller said. I always want to know how Trevor is doing and that he is all right.
Angie says it's important to her and her three daughters to keep in touch.
It's a big part of our healing process, she said. We're happy that he has adjusted and is doing well.
Angie said it meant a lot to her family when Trevor participated in a recent run held in Trooper Miller's memory.
Angie and Josh would have celebrated their seventh wedding anniversary three days ago.
Angie said events like Wednesday's dedication help ease the pain and give comfort knowing her husband's name will be perpetuated at the Joshua Miller Post Office.
But it never gets easier, she said of the healing process. But it's good to know we're not in it alone.
Lombardo knows what the Miller family has been going through. His brother, John, was a Pittston firefighter who lost his life in the line of duty.
It's important to show what the men and women in emergency services do and how they are at risk, Lombardo said. It's good to know that people respect what we do for a living – that we put our lives on the line every day.
State police Commissioner Frank Noonan said people in law enforcement leave their homes and families every day without knowing for certain if they will return.
I always look to say something to comfort Angie, but she always ends up comforting me, Noonan said. All troopers go to work every day knowing they will lay down their lives if need be. Josh Miller was a devoted husband, father and an inspiration to all state troopers. He was an exceptional man.
Angie Miller took time to talk about her husband to let people know the kind of man he was.
Josh was an incredible father who loved spending time with the girls, she said. He took them skiing, played ball in the backyard and gave them piggyback rides. He was teaching them to hunt.
Angie said Josh attended every school event they had and she remembered that he never shied away from changing diapers.
He would get up at 2 a.m. if they were crying, she said. He was a wonderful husband. His love was unconditional. We were a tight unit – we were a team.