News

Bellefonte bridge renaming to honor veterans

Bill Gentzel stands with other members of the Bellefonte VFW Honor Guard during the Centre County Courthouse Memorial Day service on Monday, May 25, 2015.
Bill Gentzel stands with other members of the Bellefonte VFW Honor Guard during the Centre County Courthouse Memorial Day service on Monday, May 25, 2015. CDT photo

A table was set up in front of Centre County Courthouse on Monday, before and after the Memorial Day ceremony.

The purpose was to get Centre County’s veterans to sign up to take part in a parade on July 3 before the High Street Bridge in Bellefonte is renamed Veterans Bridge. Local servicemen and women will act as “grand marshals” in the parade before the formal dedication. A patriotic concert will also be part of the event, organizer Deb Burger said.

“It’s an entire ‘Thank You’ to veterans event,” Burger said.

The parade will begin at 4 p.m. and the dedication and music will start at 7:30 p.m., Burger said.

Earlier this month, a bill introduced by Rep. Kerry Benninghoff, R-Bellefonte, to rename the bridge was unanimously passed in the state House of Representatives and is being considered by the state Senate.

Although the drive to get names focused on veterans who returned home to Centre County, Burger said that she is remembering someone who did not on Memorial Day. Her brother, Air Force Maj. Lewis P. Smith II, was shot down over Laos on Memorial Day, May 30, 1968, when he was 25 years old.

He is still missing in action.

  Comments