Alabama U.S. delegation wants highway from Selma to Montgomery named after John Lewis

Alabama U.S. delegation wants highway from Selma to Montgomery named after John Lewis
Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., poses for a photograph under a quote of his that is displayed in the Civil Rights Room in the Nashville Public Library Friday, Nov. 18, 2016, in Nashville, Tenn. (Source: AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Alabama U.S. House members sent a letter to Gov. Kay Ivey asking to name parts of U.S. Highway 80 after Civil Right icon Congressman John Lewis.

They want to name the 54-mile trek from Selma to Montgomery, the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Highway.

“The sacrifices made by John Lewis in the 1965 Selma to Montgomery marches were essential to advancing civil rights to countless Americans,” the letter said. “The heroism he demonstrated on Bloody Sunday in 1965 should not be forgotten and naming the highway in Congressman Lewis’ honor is essential to recognizing this history.”

A spokesperson for the governor’s office said naming the highway would need to begin in the state legislature.

Portions of the highway are currently named after civil rights activists including, Amelia Platts Boynton-Robinson, Dr. Frederick D. Reese, Marie Foster, and John Hulett. Other sections are called the “International Voting Rights Trail” and the “Black Belt Nature and Heritage Trail.”

Lawmakers send letter to Gov. Kay Ivey about naming highway after John Lewis.
Lawmakers send letter to Gov. Kay Ivey about naming highway after John Lewis. (Source: wsfa)
Lawmakers send letter to Gov. Kay Ivey about naming highway after John Lewis.
Lawmakers send letter to Gov. Kay Ivey about naming highway after John Lewis. (Source: wsfa)

There are also discussions about renaming the Edmund Pettus Bridge, but it faced opposition in Selma.

A town hall will be held in Selma in August to discuss ideas to honor John Lewis. A spokesperson for democratic lawmakers said people in Selma feel their voices are not being heard.

More details on that town hall are expected to be released later.

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