Route 53 is a state highway in Morris County, N.J. that extends for almost five miles. Today, the Assembly Transportation Committee approved a measure to rename it the “Alex DeCroce Memorial Highway.”

Former Assemblyman Alex DeCroce (Tim Larsen, Governor's office)

DeCroce collapsed and died at the State House in Trenton in January of 2012 following a long legislative day, the final voting session of N.J.’s 214th legislature.

The bill released today is sponsored by DeCroce’s former running mate, Assemblyman Jay Webber, Assembly Republican Leader Jon Bramnick, and Morris County Assembly Republicans Anthony M. Bucco and Michael Patrick Carroll.  Assembly Speaker Sheila Oliver, D-Essex and Passaic, is also a sponsor of the bill.

“Serving Morris County's residents in elected office was a genuine passion for Alex DeCroce and the focus of his life in public service,” says Webber. “Naming Rt. 53 after him is a fitting tribute to a wonderful man and an important reminder to his neighbors that Assemblyman DeCroce worked tirelessly on their behalf for decades."

An identical bill in the State Senate was unanimously approved on Sept 12. It is sponsored by Senators Joe Pennacchio, Anthony R. Bucco, Tom Kean, Jr. and Steve Oroho.

“This legislation is a fitting tribute to a respected legislator and gentleman,” says Bramnick who succeeded DeCroce as GOP Leader in January, 2012. “Alex was a model statesman who led our caucus with grace and integrity. His wisdom and kindness made this state a better place. This bill is a well-deserved honor and will ensure that Alex DeCroce is never forgotten.”