Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Wheeler Highway Bill Passes House, Sent to Senate

Image result for joshua wheeler
Legislation to rename U.S. Highway 64 in Sequoyah County between Muldrow and Roland as the Master Sgt. Joshua Wheeler, U.S. Army Delta Force, Memorial Highway overwhelmingly passed the Oklahoma House of Representatives Tuesday.

On Wednesday it was sent to the Oklahoma Senate and, if approved there, it will go on to Gov. Mary Fallin for her signature.

State Rep. John Bennett (R-Sallisaw) said House Bill 2268 is an important piece of legislation to remember the sacrifice of a young man who died for the cause of freedom.

“We owe everything to men like Joshua Wheeler who have given their lives for what America stands for,” Bennett said. “The least we can do is memorialize his and his family’s sacrifice as a reminder for generations that freedom is not free. It comes at a great price. I thank Master Sgt. Wheeler and his family for such an enormous sacrifice. This memorial will stand in his honor.”

The MSG. Joshua Wheeler, U.S. Army Delta Force, Memorial Highway will run from the intersection of U.S. Highway 64 and State Highway 64B east to the intersection of U.S. Highway 64 and County Road N4760.

Joshua L. Wheeler, originally from Roland, was a U.S. Army Special Forces Operational Detachment-Delta Force master sergeant who was killed in Iraq during Operation Inherent Resolve. He was the first American service member killed in action as a result of enemy fire while fighting ISIS militants. At the time of his death, he was the first American to be killed in action in Iraq since November 2011.

Wheeler was a highly decorated Delta Force operator having earned 11 Bronze Star Medals including four with Valor Devices. He was posthumously awarded the Purple Heart.

Wheeler, the father of four, graduated in 1994 from Muldrow High School.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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