U.S. Navy Ensign John R. Elliott

TRENTON – Legislation sponsored by Sen. Vince Polistina (R-2) that designates the interchange between State Highway Route 42 and Interstate Highway Route 295 as the “Ensign John R. Elliott Memorial Interchange” was unanimously approved by the New Jersey Senate May 20.

“I’m proud that the Senate approved my legislation to honor the late U.S. Naval Academy graduate Ensign John R. Elliott, who tragically lost his life in a head-on collision with a drunk driver,” Polistina said in a release. “Ensign Elliot exemplified true leadership and served this country with honor and distinction. In recognition of his service, this bill would formally commemorate his legacy by naming this newly built interchange as the Ensign John R. Elliott Memorial Interchange.”

“Our family wishes to extend a heartfelt thank you to Sen. Polistina for sponsoring this bill, which names the new exit connecting Interstate 295 and Route 42 in memory of our son,” said Bill Elliott, who after his son’s death established the Hero Campaign, a nonprofit organization that encourages appointing a designated driver when attending a night on the town. “The Ensign John R. Elliott Memorial Interchange will represent more than a convenient new gateway to the Jersey shore. It also will save lives, and would have saved our son’s if it had been available the night he was killed by a drunken driver while traveling home for his mother’s birthday on an undivided highway in July, 2000.”

Ensign John R. Elliott, United States Navy, (Nov. 17, 1977 – July 22, 2000) was named the Outstanding HERO of his graduating class at the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis for his service as a human education resource officer in the academy’s Character Development Program.

Read the bill here S-2876.

Categories: Downbeach

Nanette LoBiondo Galloway

Award winning journalist covering news, events and people of Atlantic County for more than 20 years.