An effort to have the stretch of U.S. Highway 19 in Lee County named in memory of the late Lance Cpl. Steve Sutton is one that local officials should pursue.
Sutton was the embodiment of the word hero, losing his life in Afghanistan in the service of our nation. Recognition such as this will do nothing to bring him back to his loved ones, but it would demonstrate in a highly public way the respect and admiration we all have for a man who sacrificed his life for his country, and for sacrifices of the wife and family who loved him.
While we’re sure there are legal issues that have to be cleared before something like this can happen, we hope that Lee County officials will quickly take the first step and explore the possibility. A number of Southwest Georgia highways — and many others in Georgia — bear the names of various people who have made a difference. It’s difficult to imagine anyone who has made more of a difference — or who is more deserving of an honor such as this — than a young Marine who has died in combat defending America.
Whether this can be accomplished by the May 26 anniversary of Sutton’s death — the target date for the dedication sought by the group formed by retired Marine Master Sgt. James Freundschuh — is unknown. As with most matters involving government, there is likely red tape and procedures to be navigated.
But Lee County officials should give this suggestion the weight it deserves and do all that they can to make this dedication happen. Sutton’s great sacrifice — and the sacrifice of his wife and family — should always be remembered. He deserves this honor.