We may never stop calling the highway that carries Route 128 past Grant Circle all the way through to East Main Street anything but “The Extension.”
But the naming of that road as a recognized “Purple Heart Highway,” with soon-to-be-positioned signs that were unveiled Saturday and will identify it accordingly, marks a significant tribute to an important group of people who have sacrificed greatly in service to our country and deserve a noteworthy show of thanks from our community. That’s precisely what this designation achieves.
It was fitting then that Saturday’s ceremony commissioning the island portion of Route 128 as a Purple Heart Highway – and thereby part of the National Purple Heart Trail System that includes highways, byways and other transportation elements — not only current city, state and federal officials, but Purple Heart recipients themselves, including Lou Agnew, commander of the Military Order of the Purple Heart, and former City Councilor and Purple Heart veteran John “Gus” Foote, who, with current councilor Joe Ciolini, put the wheels in motion for the city to gain this designation.
They and everyone involved with this effort deserve credit — and a round of thanks in their own right.