A great honor is coming for one of Sweetwater and Monroe County’s most distinguished citizens as the New Highway 68 bridge that spans Interstate 75 will be named after World War II hero Clinton Riddle at 10 a.m. on Friday (Aug. 9).
Riddle, who turned 98 in February, is a D-Day survivor with one of the most impressive military records of any remaining war survivors in the world.
“I think it will be a great lasting tribute,” Mayor Doyle Lowe said when the City Commission decided to name the overpass after Riddle.
The overpass is located at Exit 60 near Burger King and McDonald’s.
Riddle served as the radioman when his glider crashed behind enemy lines at Normandy in June of 1944 during the D-Day Invasion. The glider hit a treetop in a field lined with hedges and trees. The glider hit so hard it broke Riddle’s radio antennae, but he was able to fashion a new antennae and keep his men in contact.
Riddle also crash landed acting as co-pilot in an American CG4A Waco Gilder in Holland and survived the coldest winter in 20 years during the Battle of the Bulge from Dec. 17, 1944, to Feb. 18, 1945.
Riddle came home from the war to raise a family and became a well-known minister in the community.
Riddle recently returned to France for the 75th Anniversary of the D-Day Invasion.