Yes he needs a lawyer. Without a lawyer representing him I wouldn't send this young man into court with a plan to plea guilty to anything. Get one that practices regularly in the county in which the citations were issued.
Your chances of getting a pro bono attorney for that type of case are extremely slim. But the good news is that if you can find a personal injury attorney who thinks you have a good case, they will take it on a contingency fee basis, meaning when and if you get money that's where your attorney fees will get paid out of. Expect your attorney fees to be 33%, perhaps 40% of whatever money you get.
Get a lawyer to help you with that ticket. You don't want it to to spiral out of hand. At worst, you want court supervision on it.
As to the officer, he didn't HAVE to right you ticket; he could have exercised judgment and not done so. But I can envision where he doesn't write you a ticket and then the lady has an issue with getting her car fixed and then the next thing you know the officer has to explain to his supervisor why he didn't write you up.
Some officers might not have, but I'm not...
Truck collisions are not car collisions and should never be handled as such. You explained the "what" of your crash and how it was the fault of the truck driver. Truck collision lawyers get to the "Why" your accident really happened and that's where the true, and high value of your case is at. Don't let a car accident lawyer handle your case. Call me and I will set you up with a world class truck collision lawyer in your area. 888-346-8841
Bankruptcy is an option but you need to see an attorney about it to make sure that is a wise decision overall. Some accident damages cannot be discharged in BR but I suspect that is not your situation.
My condolences on your loss. I had read the article in the paper and thought of how tragic that was. Your civil lawsuit options may be many, not the least of which is the drunk driver, the place that served him alcohol, and your own insurance company.
Without a doubt you need legal counsel, but there are just too many questions to answer on this website. Don't feel like you need to hire me, but this link will at least get you started.