Bill to rename highway in honor of Centre Hall soldier passes

House Bill 2049, a proposal to rename a portion of state Route 144 in honor of a slain Vietnam War soldier from Centre Hall, was unanimously approved Monday by the state House of Representatives.

The measure, introduced by state Rep. Kerry Benninghoff, R-Bellefonte, passed 198-0.

The bill was prompted by a request by former Coburn resident Jim Hironimus, a Vietnam War veteran who served in the Air Force. It proposes renaming Route 144 from Old Fort to Potters Mills after Pfc. Donald Ray Lucas, a Marine killed Jan. 12, 1969, during ground fighting in Quang Nam province, South Vietnam.

According to Hironimus’ research, Lucas was the only Centre Hall resident who died in the war. The bill now advances to the state Senate.