New highway name honours veterans
NIAGARA FALLS — Highway 420, used by more than 44,000 drivers a day during the summer, has been renamed Niagara Veterans Memorial Highway.
The highlight of a ceremony held late last week was the unveiling of a sign featuring a red poppy with the name Niagara Veterans Memorial Highway.
Coun. Victor Pietrangelo first suggested the idea several years ago.
By renaming the highway, he said, “we will be making a statement as a community in that we support and we stand behind our veterans. We honour what they have given to us.”
Veterans, students and dignitaries watched the sign unveiling.
Saint Paul High School student Michelle Sanlon spoke about her trip to Vimy Ridge and thanked the veterans for the sacrifices they made.
Niagara Falls Mayor Ted Salci said, “ Highway 420 has always been the red carpet that we’ve rolled out to our visitors. This well-travelled stretch of highway is the gateway to our community, our region and to our country.
“ The millions of visitors we invite here each year will now be reminded of the honour we place upon our veterans.”
Regional Chairman Peter Partington said it has been said there are no unwounded soldiers.
“They all paid the price for our freedom, for our peace and our way of life.”
Veteran Jim Green, a member of Royal Canadian Legion branch 51, said veterans have been waiting a long time for something like this.
“This is great and we thank all those who support us because we need it.”
Mike Blais, president of the Royal Canadian Regiment Association for Niagara, said every veteran should be ecstatic because to rename a highway is an honour.
“ This is a great way to promote Canada’s heritage. Many visitors drive down this highway and they will see that we respect our veterans. People will be very impressed,” said Blais.
Niagara veterans gather around the sign renaming Highway 420 to Niagara Veterans Memorial Highway, at a ceremony held last week.