Upper Pittsgrove Twp., N.J. (July 21, 2017) – The recently upgraded roadside memorial honoring Navy Ensign John R. Elliott was dedicated at a ceremony held today in Upper Pittsgrove Township, N.J. Bill and Muriel Elliott, co-founders of the John R. Elliott HERO Campaign for Designated Drivers, and their daughter Jennifer were joined by state and local dignitaries at the ceremony.
New Jersey State Senate President Stephen Sweeney, also a Vice President of the International Ironworkers, attended and discussed his bill, which renamed a section of Route 40 in honor of Ensign Elliott. The section of Route 40 in Salem County, from mile markers 15.4 to 15.5, is now The John R. Elliott HERO Campaign Way.
“Our heart goes out to the Elliott family and I’m glad to see this bill make it through,” said Sweeney. “Renaming this section of Route 40 is a way to honor Ensign Elliott and commemorate the work the Elliott family has done over the past 17 years in saving lives.”
The dedication marks the 17th anniversary of the tragic death of Ensign Elliott, a 2000 graduate of the United States Naval Academy, in a collision with a drunken driver. The HERO Campaign for Designated Drivers, established by the Elliott family in their son’s memory, has grown into a regional movement to prevent drunk driving in seven states.
The Local 5 Bricklayers, led by Richard Tolson, President of The International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers/Administrative District Council of New Jersey, and the Iron Workers Local 399, led by Richard Sweeney, President, volunteered to upgrade the roadside memorial. EP Henry, a local business, donated materials used for the upgrades.
“Muriel and I are humbled by the dedication of our son’s memorial and the renaming of this part of Route 40,” said Elliott. “Our goal is to continue this work until the use of designated drivers is as automatic as wearing seatbelt.”
A video compilation from today’s dedication is available here: http://mbf.cc/GsxINM.
Digital copies of event materials are available for download at www.callpm.com/HERO.
New Jersey State Senate President Stephen Sweeney, Assemblyman John Burzichelli, Assemblyman Adam Taliaferro and Bill Elliott, Founder of the HERO Campaign, holding the John R. Elliott HERO Campaign Way highway sign.
The upgraded roadside memorial of Ensign John R. Elliott.
Richard Sweeney, President of the Iron Workers Local 399, and Richard Tolson, President of The International Union of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers/ Administrative District Council of New Jersey, with their Certificates of Appreciation from the HERO campaign.