WAVERLY, Tenn. (WKRN) — News 2 is honoring a hometown hero Friday as we reflect one year after the devastating floods in Waverly took 20 lives.

A Tennessee Highway Patrol trooper was assigned to tell families the unimaginable – that their loved one did not survive.

Lieutenant Bill Miller is going on 26 years with the Tennessee Highway Patrol. He said his experience in Waverly was by far the most heart wrenching.

“There’s not a word out there to describe how terrible it truly was,” he said.

Nearly a year ago, the wrath of mother nature changed the community of Waverly forever.

“Our weapons of war could not do any worse than what mother nature did in a few short moments,” Miller said.

Miller was assigned to set up the mobile command post so local authorities could communicate.

“But when I got there, I was immediately overwhelmed with individuals asking and seeking assistance to help find their loved ones,” Miller said.

He said one family will stick out forever.

“I’m shaking about this just thinking about this. One was a very young baby that I had to try to find for these parents frantic not knowing where their baby was. The baby was swept away from the parent’s arms,” Miller said.

He later delivered the news that the baby boy did not survive along with 19 others as Miller identified them in a makeshift morgue at the hospital.

“But to have to physically go in and unzip and look at these body bags, every face I saw, just knowing what their last memory had to be,” Miller recalled.

He then had to find the words to tell a family something that would change their lives forever.

“When you’re there with them, you’re in their most intimate moment of their life. It’s a moment that they are never going to forget; it’s like the birth of their child,” Miller said.

In all of his years in law enforcement, he said nothing could have prepared him for this.

“It’s something that lives with me and every trooper for the rest of our lives, until the end of my day,” Miller said.