Ceremony dedicates Leonard Morris Memorial Highway

Published 11:21 am Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Ceremony dedicates Leonard Morris Memorial Highway

Legislators and friends and family of the late Rep. Leonard Morris gathered at a ceremony Friday morning at the MDOT District 2 auditorium in Batesville to dedicate the Leonard Morris Memorial Highway. Belinda Morris, his widow, and Lenora Morris, his daughter, are at right of the sign.
The Panolian photo by Rupert Howell

By Rupert Howell
Local and state officials joined family and friends of the late Leonard Morris Friday in a standing room only auditorium Friday to honor his memory with the unveiling of the sign marking Morris’ namesake memorial highway.
Leonard Morris Highway is recognized as the portion of Highway 35 north of Batesville from the Brewer/Keating Rd. intersection to Interstate 55. It passes the the Harmon Industrial Park where Morris assisted in luring industry during his tenure as Panola Partnership board member and interim director and a Representative of District 11.
Highway Commission Secretary Amy Hornback welcomed guests and introduced speakers in the absence of Northern Transportation Commissioner Mike Tagert who was involved in an auto accident prior to the 10:30 ceremony.
Mississippi Senator Willie Simmons said, “He (Morris) was different. He was spiritually led in his decision making. . . a friend because of his integrity.”
Mississippi Senator Gray Tolllison said Morris was, “The salt and light to the world.”
Senator Robert Jackson said Morris, “Was a tireless advocate for he entire state of Mississippi.”
Representative Tyrone Ellis said, “We need more people like Leonard Morris,”
Representative Lataisha Jackson said Morris “Stood for unity, bridging the gap.”
Batesville Mayor Jerry Autrey said Morris taught him how to better deal with other communities.
Panola Supervisor Board President Cole Flint said Morris wore many hats and that his wife and daughters are continuing to his work through their actions.
House Bill 907 states that the Leonard Morris Memorial Highway will have appropriate signs along and approaching that segment.
Family members unveiled the sign at the end of the dedication before being served refreshments on the Batesville Square.

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