AUSTIN, Texas (FOX 7 Austin) - A bill has been filed in the Texas legislation to dedicate a portion of Airport Boulevard to the memory of Richard Overton, the nation's oldest living veteran who died on Dec. 27, 2018 at 112 years old.
Texas State Representative Sheryl Cole filed HB 1821.
If approved, the portion of State Loop 111, otherwise known as Airport Boulevard, between I-35 and US-183, would be designated as the Richard Overton Memorial Highway. Overton was believed to be the oldest verified surviving U.S. World War II veteran and oldest man in the United States.
Overton was born near Bastrop in 1906 and served in the army for three years during World War II.
He spent the majority of his life in Austin and was often seen on the porch of his home, which he built in East Austin in 1945. He gave credit to God for his longevity, but he always said cigars and whiskey helped.
“I been smoking cigars from when I was 18 years old, I’m still a smoking ‘em. 12 a day."
Overton died in a rehab facility in Austin, Texas on December 27, 2018.
"I was saddened at the passing of Richard Overton who, at the age of 112, was the nation's oldest living veteran, and a long, long time resident of East Austin," Representative Cole said in a press release. "Our community is proud to have known Mr. Overton for such a great length of time, where he could always be found on his porch ready to talk with anyone on their way through. It was heartening to see the outpouring of love to celebrate this man's life, and I am proud to do what I can to honor this local legend."
Representative Cole explained further in her press release that if approved, this designation would be in addition to the current name. Therefore no addresses would be affected.