Szymanski memorial highway bill soon heading to governor

LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan Senate on Tuesday approved House legislation to permanently honor Marine Lance Cpl. Steven Szymanski, who was killed while on duty during a training exercise at Fort Bragg, North Carolina in 2014.

“I proudly supported this measure to show our deep appreciation for the service and sacrifice of Lance Corporal Steven Szymanski,” said Sen. Jim Stamas, R-Midland, who sponsored a similar bill in the Senate. “Lance Corporal Szymanski answered the call to service and made the ultimate sacrifice serving our country. Once signed by the governor, this tribute will honor the memory of a native soldier who never returned home and remind us all about the true price of freedom.”

House Bill 4485, sponsored by Rep. Annette Glenn, R-Midland, would designate a portion of U.S. 10 from Jefferson Avenue to Bay City Road in Midland as the “Marine Lance Corporal Steven J. Szymanski Memorial Highway.”

The bill has been returned to the House to be enrolled and sent to the governor.

Szymanski was a 2008 graduate of Midland High School. After earning his associate degree in criminal justice, Szymanski enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps in 2013. He is survived by his parents, John and Dawn, and sister Ashlie.

Szymanski’s parents spoke in June before the Senate Transportation and Infrastructure Committee in support of Stamas’ bill.

HB 4485 would have no fiscal impact on the state or local government. Under state law, the Michigan Department of Transportation can place markers indicating the name of a memorial highway only “when sufficient private contributions are received to completely cover the cost of erecting and maintaining those markers.”