I-85 Yadkin River bridge dedicated in honor of veterans
To start off a weekend filled with honors for veterans, they got a big one Friday — an entire bridge.
The new twin Interstate 85 spans crossing the Yadkin River between Rowan and Davidson counties were officially dedicated today as the Yadkin River Veterans Memorial Bridge.
Veterans and other residents of both counties attended the ceremony just off the highway in Davidson County, as did local and state elected and appointed officials and U.S. Rep. Mel Watt.
“I want to pay tribute to our veterans,” said Watt, a Democrat whose 12th District runs through Rowan and Davidson counties. “We’re honored that this bridge would be named as a memorial bridge for our veterans. Thank you for your service.”
Under a clear blue sky, Watt, state transportation board member Jake Alexander and Tony Tata, the state’s transportation secretary, heralded the new bridge and praised the veterans for whom it’s now named.
Alexander called them “the heroes of this republic.”
Tata who retired from the U.S. Army as a brigadier general, said the Department of Transportation reserves naming of bridges for those who contributed significant to the state or died in the line of duty.
He said veterans “have allowed all North Carolinians to live free and pursue their dreams.”
The new bridge replaces one built in built in 1955 that had consistently been ranked as one of the worst in the state in recent years. It’s part of a $201.5 million state project that includes widening 7.1 miles of the interstate in Rowan and Davidson counties and replace seven other bridges.
Read more in Saturday’s Post.