The Leading Creek Bridge officially was dedicated to the memory of a fallen Marine during an emotional ceremony in Elkins Friday.
The bridge was renamed in honor of Lance Cpl. David Lee Cosner, an Elkins native who was killed in the bombing of Marine barracks in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1983.
Cosner's family was on hand for the ceremony, along with Delegates Denise Campbell and Bill Hartman, both D-Randolph, who sponsored the legislation requesting the state Division of Highways to rename the bridge.
The Inter-Mountain photo by Brad Johnson
From left, Delegate Denise Campbell applauds as Commandant Roger Ware of Marine Corps League Detachment 956 presents a legislative resolution to Harold ‘Red’ Cosner, officially dedicating the Leading Creek Bridge to Cosner’s son, David Lee Cosner.
Cosner "was deployed with Battalion Landing Team 1st Bn 8th Marines, 2nd Marine Division, during a United Nations peacekeeping mission in Beirut," Commandant Roger Ware of Marine Corps League Detachment 956 said during the ceremony.
"On Oct. 23, 1983, 241 Americans lost their lives in the explosion of the Marine barracks in Beirut," Ware said. "This is another day in infamy and was the largest single-day loss of U.S. Marines since taking Iowa Jima in February 1945.
"We reflect upon this fallen Marine and the naming of this bridge will serve as a lasting symbol of the remembrance," Ware said. "As members of the Cosner family cross this bridge, they know that David's legacy is forever forged in history."
Cosner's father, Harold "Red" Cosner, was presented with the legislative resolution to commemorate the dedication.
"This means the world to me," Cosner told The Inter-Mountain after the ceremony. "We've waited for a long time for this. We want to thank Delegates Campbell and Hartman, and the Marine Corps League."
"It was a beautiful ceremony," Leanna Cosner, the daughter of David Cosner, told The Inter-Mountain after the ceremony, which she attended with her son, David McCoy.
David Cosner was one of five West Virginians, and the only Randolph County native, to be killed in the Beirut bombing.
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