Congregation mourns pastor killed in reckless driving accident

NOW: Congregation mourns pastor killed in reckless driving accident


MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Pastor Aaron Strong -- a father and husband -- is being remembered today by the Congregation at Grace Lutheran Church in Downtown Milwaukee.

40-year-old Aaron Strong was killed Wednesday morning when a speeding driver blew a red light.

Police say the suspect, 22-year-old Jose Manuel Silva, could face up to 25 years in prison, a fine up to $100,000, or both.

The congregation at Grace Lutheran Church is yet another community adding their voices to the chorus of people calling for action against reckless driving.

"In the Christian world we would say that Jesus is the light of the world and Pastor Aaron, was also a light of the world," said Matt Trotter, Former Chairperson for The Congregation "I was privileged to call him both a friend and pastor."

Trotter says Pastor Strong glorified God, went in his word and worked with God's people.

"When Aaron died the other day, I thought of that immediately like he lived all three of those things," said Trotter.

He said it's been hard on their congregation.

"Hurt. And again, we keep an eternal perspective my wife and I do in the family here at Grace too," said Trotter. "So you know that in the big picture, Aaron, rejoices with God, but we mourn. A good man died. […] His wife and kids now have to live without him."

Trotter says things like this don't just hurt Strong's wife and two kids he left behind, but other families as well.

"I think we also have to acknowledge another life and family life is potentially ruined here too," said Trotter.

The life of Jose Manuel Silva is facing prison or heavy fines if found guilty.

Trotter says now he's hoping elected officials, police and the courts can work together to combat the issue.

"But ultimately, like have we pulled out all the stops to make Milwaukee the good land and the safest driving city in the world?"

He says it's on everyone to talk with people we know who are driving dangerously as well.

"We have to stop them. We have to hold them accountable. It's not a video game."

The visitation for Pastor Strong will be at Grace Lutheran Church on Tuesday, Oct. 18. Services will be on Wednesday.

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