The town of Wilton is honoring soldiers, firefighters and police officers who have died in the line of duty. Wednesday lawmakers dedicated the Fallen Heroes Memorial Highway. It was inspired by a 19 year old soldier who was killed in Iraq in 2006.
The ceremony was Wilton’s way of saying "Thank You". Nick Madara’s father says he hopes this dedication will serve as constant reminder to everyone of his son’s sacrifice. “It’s people really recognizing what our armed and civilian uniformed forces are doing for the country to protect us on a daily basis,” he said
An emotional Bill Madaras says not a day goes by that he doesn't remember his son Nick's sacrifice. “Its difficult every single day we have to live with it, new,” he said. Now his legacy is prominently posted to remind everyone else.
Senator Toni Boucher (R), pushed to rename a portion of Route 33 from Wilton to Westport. Her inspiration was Nick. “It's a great reminder when individuals drive that road and see the sign and their children will ask what does it mean and they can relate the story,” she said.
His story is well known in Wilton. Madaras made the ultimate sacrifice when he was fighting in Iraq in 2006. The Army Private First Class loved kids and after his death his family started the Kick for Nick Foundation which donates soccer balls to Iraqi children.
Nicks father says his son would’ve been humbled by this dedication. “He’d say that all those other people are important, as important or more important than he was.”
But for the small group of Wilton residents who gathered at the steps of town hall, Nick's memory is the most important.
“You couldn't help but be touched by it. We all know Nick and his family and are deeply moved by his sacrifice,” said Wilton resident Stephen Hudspeth.