, Muskogee, OK

September 1, 2013

Veterans Memorial Highway dedication Monday

By Wendy Burton
Phoenix Staff Writer

— U.S. 62 is no longer named in honor of Teddy Lehman, who played football for the University of Oklahoma and the Detroit Lions.

But Lehman is fine with that, he wrote in a letter earlier this year when the proposed change — to Veterans Memorial Highway — was approved by legislators.

“At the time you named the highway after me, I was shocked and honored and, at the same time, a little uncomfortable,” Lehman said in the letter. “Thank you for naming the highway after me back in 2004 and to the people of Fort Gibson who have continually supported and helped me. For that, I am humbly appreciative. We should certainly move on and do the right thing for our veterans.”

Fort Gibson American Legion Post #20 Commander Tim Smith said signs were put up Thursday at the beginning and end of the section of highway between Muskogee and Fort Gibson.

The name change will be dedicated at 10 a.m. Monday during a special ceremony held at the northwest corner of U.S. 62 and Willey Road, Smith said. Overflow parking will be available at the elementary school nearby.

Sen. Kim David, R-Porter, and Rep. Arthur Hulbert, R-Fort Gibson, will be in attendance, as well as Lehman, he said.

“We’ll give Teddy Lehman one of the old signs with his name on it as a way to thank him for being so gracious about the name change,” Smith said. “We’re also going to give his mother one.”

The public is invited to attend.

The new signs were paid for by private donations and the American Legion Post #20, Smith said.

Additionally, the Trail of Honor, flags lining the path to the National Cemetery, will be on display for the Labor Day holiday.

Signs proclaiming the path the “Trail of Honor” were installed several months ago.

Direct Traffic Control donated those signs and the labor to install them, Smith said.

Reach Wendy Burton at (918) 684-2926 or

If you go

WHAT: Dedication ceremony for Veterans Memorial Highway.

WHEN: 10 a.m. Monday.

WHERE: Northwest corner of U.S. 62 and Willey Road. Overflow parking at nearby elementary school.

INFORMATION: American Legion Post #20 Commander Tim Smith, (918) 577-8738.