For Immediate Release - December 22, 2011

GOVERNOR PATRICK SIGNS BILL NAMING LEOMINSTER BRIDGE IN HONOR OF FALLEN SOLDIER JONATHAN ROBERGE

Jonathan Roberge Memorial Bridge
(Photo credit: Eric Haynes/Governor's Office)

BOSTON – Wednesday, December 21, 2011 -- Governor Deval Patrick today signed S. 1741, “An Act Designating a Certain Bridge in the City of Leominster as the Jonathan Roberge Memorial Bridge.” The bridge is being named after Jonathan Roberge of Leominster, a 22-year-old private first class in the United States Army, who was killed in action near Mosul, Iraq on February 9, 2009.

“I am proud to honor a young man who made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of our Commonwealth, our country and our freedom,” said Governor Patrick. “This is just a small measure of our gratitude for Jonathan Roberge, his family and his community.”

“Governor Patrick and I join the Leominster community and our colleagues in the state legislature to remember Jonathan Roberge for his service to our Commonwealth and our country,” said Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray, chair of the Governor’s Advisory Council on Veterans’ Services. “We thank all of our military servicemen and women throughout the year and designating the Jonathan Roberge Memorial Bridge will honor a brave hero each and every day in the City of Leominster.”

Roberge was driving a Humvee when he and fellow soldiers in the 3rd Battalion 8th Calvary Regiment came under attack by Improvised Explosive Device. Roberge received the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart posthumously from the United States Army. He was a 2005 graduate of Leominster High School’s Center for Technical Education, where he studied in the automotive technician program. He is a former mechanic for Gervais Ford in Ayer and a former Boy Scout. He is survived by his parents: John and Pauline; his two sisters Meghan and Sarah; and a younger brother Andrew.

"I was very proud to have filed this legislation on behalf of the Roberge family; certainly this is the very least we can do to commemorate Jonathan's memory," said Senator Jennifer L. Flanagan. “May it serve as a constant reminder of the sacrifice made by all those serving in the military and how thankful we are for their service.”

"This is a very memorable occasion for our community as we honor Jonathan, a young man from our city who sacrificed his life in defense of our country, state and city," said Representative Dennis A. Rosa. "I am so proud and honored to be a part of this recognition to one of our own city heroes."

“Leominster’s commitment to the Roberge Family remains steadfast," said Leominster Mayor Dean J. Mazzarella. "The naming of this bridge, together with the plans for the Jonathan Roberge Memorial Park, represent a state-wide acknowledgement of Jonathan’s sacrifice on behalf of all of us so that we may continue to live in a peaceful and free country. Leominster will never forget his dedication to his family and hometown. We hope both sites provide a place of comfort and peace for the Roberge Family and veterans throughout our community." 

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