Thursday, January 5, 2017

Wheeler Highway Dedication Will Be Saturday

A sign designating a portion of U.S. Highway 64 between Muldrow and Roland as the Master Sergeant Joshua Wheeler, U.S. Army Delta Force, Memorial Highway, will be unveiled Saturday.

The sign unveiling and dedication will be at 11 a.m. Jan. 7 at the intersection of Cottonwood Road and U.S. Highway 64 between Muldrow and Roland. A reception for family and friends will follow immediately after at Trinity United Methodist Church, 1601 E. Shawntel Smith Blvd. in Muldrow. 

State Rep. John Bennett (R-Sallisaw) requested the name change via House Bill 2268.

Bennett said, “It’s important that we honor men like Master Sergeant Wheeler who give their lives in service for their country and their countrymen. While a highway sign may seem a small gesture for such a significant sacrifice, I know that when I pass this sign, I will pause to remember Master Sergeant Wheeler and his family and to thank God for men like him.”

Joshua L. Wheeler, 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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