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First sign unveiled for Nebraska Medal of Honor Highway

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NE HIGHWAY

SOUTH SIOUX CITY, NE (KTIV) - Nebraska Medal of Honor Highway, that's the new designated name of Highway 20.

On Thursday the Nebraska Department of Roads unveiled the first sign celebrating the change.

Gene Twiford, a Laurel, Nebraska veteran, played a large role in getting the Highway named.

"I got it started I guess. I got 31 towns on Highway 20. I got their 'yes's. Then all twelve counties. I got all the 'yes's from them. I didn't have much trouble, nobody said 'no'. That was a good project, it was an easy project." said Gene Twiford, Veteran.

Governor Pete Ricketts approved the new name for the highway in January, making Nebraska the fifth state to adopt it.

"This is something that we owe to our veterans, to be able to acknowledge that highest medal of honor, that's given to 73 people from the state of Nebraska," said Republican Sen. Joni Albrecht, from Nebraska's 17th district. "Just to listen to the history today. You know they fought so hard for all of our freedoms, that this is just a little something that we can give back to them."

U.S. Highway 20 expands across the country starting in Boston, Massachusetts ending in Newport, Oregon.

The Nebraska Medal of Honor Highway is the longest named state highway, with 432 miles in Nebraska.

Many veterans and their families attended the celebration, and they said they're appreciative of the recognition.

"And some of those medal of honor winners are on this wall behind me. A lot of them didn't come back, and I figure they are the real heroes." said John Ludwick, Veteran. "We managed to stay alive and get back. But it means a lot to the veterans here, that their service is worth something."

According to officials, Siouxland Freedom Park has been designated to be the center of what will one day be "The National Medal of Honor Highway."

Leslie London

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