In April, Governor Laura Kelly signed House Bill 2478 dedicating a portion of U.S. 56 Highway between Edgerton and Gardner as PFC Shane Austin Memorial Highway. Austin’s family, along with Representative Ken Collins, have been working to raise the nearly $5,000 to install signs to mark the highway.
During their August 25th meeting, Edgerton City Council Members voted unanimously to purchase the signs to honor Austin, who lived in Edgerton.
After the vote, Austin’s mother Debbie, thanked the Council. “The love and support in this community is what kept me going,” she said. “I appreciate whatever we can do to support any of our veterans.”
While serving in Operation Iraqi Freedom, Army PFC Austin, 19, was killed in action on Oct. 8, 2006 in Ramadi, Iraq from injuries suffered by enemy grenade fire. Upon his death, Shane was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart and Bronze Star medals to honor his bravery.
“Shane was a hero and we can never do enough to thank his family for his ultimate sacrifice,” says Mayor Donald Roberts. “I’m glad we can help commemorate his legacy on a stretch of road that he used every day to go to school or work or meet up with friends.”
KDOT will install the signs along U.S. 56 next year.