AUSTINTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – A bridge in Austintown has been dedicated to a local hero.

The bridge along State Route 46 over State Route 180 is now the “Air Force 2nd Lt. William Vaughan Memorial Bridge.”

Many gathered on Monday at the Quaker Steak & Lube in Austintown for a ceremony.

Vaughan was a resident of Austintown. He has the following military awards earned during WWII:

  • Distinguished Service Cross
  • Distinguished Flying Cross
  • Silver Star
  • Purple Hearts (3)
  • Air Medals (14)
  • Presidential Unit Citations (2)
  • Southwest Pacific Campaign Ribbon
  • American Defense Ribbon
  • Good Conduct Ribbon
  • Philippine Campaign Ribbon

Vaughan was also part of 73 combat missions and completed 594 combat hours. He was commissioned and received pilot wings as a Bombardier in 1944.

Monday’s dedication was made possible by Veteran Ken Jakubec, the Austintown trustees, Representative Michele Lepore-Hagan and the Vaughan family.

“We had to do something for this guy because nobody knew about him. He kinda like fell through the cracks. He wasn’t one to brag about what he did when he got home,” Jakubec said.

Organizers said the process took a little less than two years to complete.