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I-84 to become Vietnam Veterans Memorial Highway

Gov. John Kitzhaber has signed legislation into law renaming Interstate 84 through Oregon the "Vietnam Veterans Memorial Highway" and held a ceremonial signing of the bill on Tuesday, May 28 in honor of Memorial Day

Sen. Laurie Monnes Anderson, D-Gresham, and Rep. Greg Matthews, D-Gresham, both worked to get the bill approved in the House and Senate.

Monnes Anderson is vice chairwoman of the Senate's veterans and emergency preparedness committee, while Matthews is chairman of the same committee in the House.

As a young woman, Monnes Anderson helped ferry soldiers in and out of Vietnam while working for Pan-Am, and she spearheaded the bill to rename Oregon's stretch of Interstate 84.

She also is working with politicians in Idaho and Utah to pass similar legislation to rename the entire length of the highway's western span.

Val Shaull, commander of the Gresham Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 180, testified on behalf of the bill.

"When we came back from Vietnam, we weren't received very well," he said. "This is just a way of saying welcome home. I think the state doing this is really, really great. It's a little belated, but I'm sure all the Vietnam veterans will appreciate this."

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