Brett Blume

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (KMOX) –  Under legislation making its way through the Missouri House, the new bridge under construction in downtown St. Louis would be called…deep breath…the “Jerry F. Costello-William ‘Bill’ Clay Sr. Veterans Memorial Bridge”.

House speaker and bill co-sponsor Steven Tilley agrees that’s quite a mouthful, and suggests it could be called The Clay Bridge for short.

The southeast Missouri Republican was asked why he’s getting behind a measure to name the new span — set to open in 2014 — after two Democrats.

“I think it’s reasonable to recognize somebody with that extent of public service,” Tilley tells KMOX News.  “We’ve named bridges after our United States Senator Kit  Bond, and so I just think it was the reasonable thing to do.”

The Illinois legislature must also approve the name.

But already there’s a grassroots movement afoot to honor female military members past, present, and future by naming it the “Women Veterans Memorial Bridge”.

Senator John Lamping of St. Louis County is open to that idea, saying it could be tacked on as a “special designation” to the official name.

“It is my understanding that there is no other bridge and very few structures nationwide that specifically honor women veterans and thus I think we should seriously consider the possibility of adding a designation of this sort,” he says.  “I feel that it would be a great opportunity for St. Louis to show our support for those women who have fought for our country.”

Copyright KMOX Radio

Comments (5)
  1. Aaron Williams says:

    Please give air time to the name The Women Veterans Memorial Bridge….it’s the least we can do to honor the hundreds of thousands of women who have defended our country. Historically, there is a reason why this one bridge, now, should be named The Women Veterans Memorial Bridge. In 1948, President Harry Truman signed the bill that expanded the role of military women beyond nursing. This Missouri-Illinois structure should be the first in the country to honor their efforts, including the dozen women in Missouri and Illinois who have made the ultimate sacrifice in combat protecting our freedom and safety during the Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts. More than 68 women ha given their lives and more than 680 have been wounded in those conflicts. It seems naming the bridge to honor them in the least we can do to thank and honor their service. Please write your state senator today in support of the bridge name The Women Veterans Memorial Bridge.

  2. Maurica Goodnight says:

    As a woman veteran, I would ask that the state of Missouri give thought to naming the bridge the Women Veterans Memorial Bridge. The role of women serving in our military has expanded over the years and women currently make up 14.5% of the Active Duty military, 19.6% of the US Army Reserve and 14.5% of the National Guard. Also of importance is the number of woman veterans, 1,840,380 total with 37,777 (MO) and 57,121 (IL). As a voter, I believe that those women who served our country so honorably will take notice of the legislative representatives who recognize our service. I thank you for recognizing us as a viable part of the military force.

  3. DavidInStLouis says:

    Yes, let’s honor the women vets!

  4. Richard says:

    How about the Deputy U.S. Marshal John Perry Memorial Bridge?

  5. Doris Farrar says:

    I vote “no” to naming the bridge for two feeders at the public trough who have wasted a lot more of our money than they have spent wisely. Where is the online poll you bragged about?

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