PAXTON, Ill. (WCIA) – A section of Illinois Route 9 in Paxton was dedicated on Thursday in honor of an Illinois State Trooper who died there 75 years ago.
Between Washington and High streets, motorists will now drive on the Trooper Marvin C. Archer Memorial Road.
Illinois State Senator Jason Barickman (R-Bloomington) and State Representative Tom Bennett (R-Gibson City), sponsors of legislation authorizing the dedication, joined Illinois State Police officials, Paxton mayor Bill Ingold and members of the Archer family to unveil a memorial sign and officially dedicate the road.
“It’s important to honor the heroes who gave their lives to protect the people they serve, whether it happened recently or decades ago,” Barickman said. “I think we do a great job in today’s world of remembering our brave men and women who died in the line of duty, but we can’t forget the heroes who sacrificed their lives to protect our parents’ and our grandparents’ communities.”
Marvin Archer joined the ISP in December of 1941 before being drafted into the Army a year later. He served in the South Pacific for three years of World War II before rejoining the ISP.
On June 18, 1946, Archer and his partner stopped a stolen car on Route 9 near College St. when a gunfight erupted. Archer and one of the two suspects were killed. The other suspect fled but was later shot and killed.
Archer was 31 years old.
“Although 75 years have passed since the Archer and ISP families suffered a tremendous loss, Trooper Archer will always be remembered as a great trooper who dedicated his life to serving and protecting others,” said ISP Director Brendan Kelly. “This roadway will forever serve as a great reminder of the ultimate sacrifice Trooper Archer made, and the dedication and honor with which he served the people of Illinois.”