Assemblyman Mark C. Walczyk, R-Watertown, had his first bill pass the Assembly on Wednesday — a bill to rename part of Route 37 after Ogdensburg journalist and editor Charles “Chuck” Kelly.
“Chuck Kelley was a newsman’s newsman,” Mr. Walczyk was quoted as saying in a statement. “He was fair in his reporting and one of the most personable people you could’ve met. The impact Chuck had on the Ogdensburg community is immeasurable, and I’m grateful for the support from my colleagues in the house on this legislation.”
The bill, A6560A/ S01827-A, is an Assembly version of a State Senate bill that already passed, introduced by Mr. Walczyk’s former boss, state Sen. Patricia A. Ritchie, R-Heuvelton. The bill calls for the section of Route 37 in Ogdensburg to be named the “Charles ‘Chuck’ Kelly Memorial Highway.”
“Chuck Kelly will forever be remembered for being a true champion for the north country,” Sen. Ritchie stated in a news release. “His contributions as a journalist and an advocate for our region have made Ogdensburg and the entire region a better place to live.”
The designated stretch of highway will run from the intersection of Route 37 and New York Avenue to the intersection with County Route 28 in the town of Lisbon.
“The passage of an Assemblymember’s first bill is something special and I couldn’t be more proud to honor Mr. Kelly,” Mr. Walczyk was quoted as saying. “This bill is just one small way to say ‘thank you’ to Chuck for leaving St. Lawrence County a better place.”
An Ogdensburg native, Mr. Kelly began his newspaper career in 1954 as a sports writer and general assignment reporter for the Ogdensburg Journal.
He spent three years in the military, but then he returned to Ogdensburg to continue writing for the paper.