COLUMBUS, Ohio - The governor signed a bill into law naming the Route 113 bridge spanning the Vermilion River in Birmingham the Staff Sgt. James P. Hunter Memorial Bridge.
Having Gov. John Kasich sign Senate Bill 300 into law is the final step in the process to name the bridge after the fallen hero.
"There is no way to ever repay the debt owed to Staff Sgt. Hunter and his family for the sacrifice they've made for our country," said State Senator Gayle Manning in a news release. "I hope that when our community drives over this bridge, they will understand that our freedom comes at a high price and remember those who have paid that price on our behalf."
Staff Sgt. Hunter was raised in Oberlin and was serving as an Army Journalist at the Fort Campbell Courier. Having served two deployments in Iraq and one in Afghanistan, Hunter was a seasoned soldier at the young age of 25.
On June 18, 2010, while serving with the Second Brigade Combat Team of the 101st Airborne Division in Kandahar, Afghanistan, Staff Sgt. Hunter was killed in the line of duty by a roadside bomb.
Since his passing, Staff Sgt. Hunter has received multiple honors including the Gold Star from the Ohio General Assembly. He also has the distinction of being the only military journalist since the Vietnam War to be honored on the Journalists Memorial in Washington, D.C.