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Caltrans Dedicates New Memorial Bridge for Fallen Navy Seal

Caltrans News Flash #103

Viaduct Part of New Bypass Improving Safety through the City of Willits

Date: November 17, 2016
District: District 1
Contact: Betsy Totten
Phone: (707) 445-6444
Contact: Tamie McGowen
Phone: (916) 657-6050

WILLITS – Caltrans recently celebrated the completion of the Willits Bypass Project on U.S. Highway 101 in Mendocino County, which also included the dedication of the 1.1 mile-long viaduct portion as the Jesse D. Pittman SO1 Navy SEAL Memorial Bridge. Pittman was a local hero, who gave his life in service to his country in Afghanistan in 2011.

In this Caltrans News Flash, you'll see the highlights of that ceremony, hear about the service of Special Operator 1 Pittman and learn why the new bypass is important not only to the local area but to transportation in northern California.

On Aug. 6, 2011, U.S. Navy SEAL and Willits local Jesse Pittman was aboard a military helicopter participating in a night raid over Afghanistan to root out Taliban fighters. The helicopter was hit by a rocket-propelled grenade and crashed, claiming the lives of those aboard. Jesse also served his community as a CAL FIRE firefighter in Mendocino County shortly before enlisting in the Navy.

The $300 million two-lane bypass is improving safety for traffic and pedestrians traveling through the city of Willits. The project also eliminated the only stoplights on U.S. 101 between San Francisco and Eureka, relieving congestion and reducing delays for motorists.

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This Caltrans News Flash is the 103rd in a series of videos highlighting Caltrans' activities that present the wide-ranging and critical work that Caltrans does to enhance California's economy and livability. To see more of these and other videos, search for #CaltransNewsFlash on Twitter or visit Caltrans News Flash on YouTube.

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