SALEM, Mass. (WBZ NewsRadio) — The Salem Police Department has confirmed one of its veteran police officers has died, after being involved in a head-on car crash late Thursday night.
The Essex District Attorney's Office said the collision, which involved 56-year-old off-duty Salem Patrolman Dana Mazola, happened on Jefferson Avenue in Salem at around 11:20 p.m Thursday.
The two vehicles sustained severe front-end damage. Both drivers were transported to Salem Hospital, where Mazola was pronounced dead. The other driver's condition is not known, but Essex DA's office says he is alive.
Massachusetts State Police are helping investigate what lead up to the fatal crash. So far, no charges have been filed.
Salem Mayor Kim Driscoll has released the following statement:
"I was absolutely devastated to learn very early this morning about the accident that took the life of Salem Police Officer Dana Mazola. Dana was a conscientious and professional officer, a loving husband and father, and a devoted public servant to the people of Salem. He was, as we say, the ‘salt of the earth’ - a conscientious rank and file patrol officer who worked hard every single shift.
"Our families often attended the same church services and I fondly recall his two girls helping keep my energetic (at the time) toddler occupied while seated in the pew next to ours. Dana had a big heart and was a warm and caring family man. On behalf of the residents he served with such diligence and dedication for 31 years, I want to express my deepest condolences to his wife Florene and his twin girls, Amanda and Savannah, and all of Dana’s family. This is an unimaginable and heartbreaking loss to them and to our whole community. May he rest in peace."
(Photo: Getty Images)