Rocky Mount, VA - A bridge west of Rocky Mount has been renamed in honor of the only Franklin County service member killed in either Iraq or Afghanistan.Jared Kubasak was killed in December 2005 after a roadside bomb hit the vehicle he was in. He was 25 at the time of his death.There is no guidebook to help gold star families - families of those killed in action fighting our nation's wars. "So now we have a special memory for Jared," said Jared's mother, Daina. The bridge is now just one more way for her to continue to deal with the loss of her son."It's something you never get over. You learn to live with that fact and you learn ways to cope with it and deal with it," said Kubasak. - the only person from this county to die in this century's wars - was killed by an roadside bomb in Baghdad in 2005.Ironically when this project first came up a few years back there was controversy surrounding it because while Jared Kubasak may be the first Franklin County service person to be memorialized in this way he was not the first, from the county, to be killed in the line of duty.Ronnie Thompson, who serves on the Board of Supervisors, originally submitted the idea; something that had never been done in this county before... which raised a variety of questions that has led to an official procedure for future applicants."We just have to go forward for today; forget the past and go forward to the future," said Thompson.An unintended byproduct of a kind gesture made to a mother and father struggling to deal with their loss so many years later. "It is important for me. I don't want his sacrifice to be forgotten. I want him to be remembered," said Kubasak.Franklin County High School's Junior ROTC program took it upon themselves to raise the $600 needed to cover the expenses for the project. The Corporal Jared William Kubasak Memorial Bridge is just west of Rocky Mount, on Route 40, over the Pigg River.
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