Home Home Page Featured A fitting and well-deserved tribute

A fitting and well-deserved tribute

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Academy Road, from Comly Road to Chalfont Drive, is now known as U.S. Army Ranger Spc. Devin J. Kuhn Memorial Highway.

Last week’s renaming ceremony was emceed by state Sen. Jimmy Dillon.

“It’s fitting and well deserved, this tribute,” Dillon said.

Devin was a graduate of St. Anselm Elementary School and Archbishop Ryan High School (class of 2013) who died in a training accident in 2018 at Camp Rilea in Oregon, when another soldier’s gun inadvertently fired while that soldier was practicing loading a firearm. At the time, Devin was preparing for his second deployment to Afghanistan. His death came three days after his 24th birthday and 32 days after his wedding.

Devin’s widow Brittany and parents Jim and Lynn were in attendance.

Devin and Brittany met in homeroom at Ryan. He felt a calling and joined the Army at 21.

“Devin was genuinely one exceptional human being,” Brittany said.

Devin has been honored in other ways. There is a mural of him on the side of the Parkwood Youth Organization building, a bench at Ryan and a banner, courtesy of the Upper Holmesburg Civic Association, that flies at Frankford and Linden avenues.

The renaming ceremony featured the Philadelphia Police and Fire Pipes and Drums playing Amazing Grace. The fire department’s Ladder 31 flew the American flag high over Academy Road. There were appearances by Mission BBQ, Warriors’ Watch Riders, the Marine Corps League and students from Ryan and St. Martha.

“It was beautiful. We weren’t expecting all of this,” Lynn Kuhn said.

Dillon called Devin “a true hero” and a “humble young man of impeccable character” who had an “infectious smile.”

“Northeast Philly can never and should never forget Devin,” he said.

Others on hand included Ryan president Joe Sanginiti and principal Joe McFadden, City Councilman Brian O’Neill, state Reps. Martina White and Ed Neilson, city elections commissioner Lisa Deeley and Gold Star father Charlie Strange.

O’Neill said Devin had all the traits, including bravery, of an Army Ranger.

White called Devin a “true local hero” and said his legacy will inspire generations to come.

McFadden recalls Devin as a member of the soccer and track teams and a student in his English class. He called him a “true gentleman.”

“Devin will not be forgotten. He will always be remembered,” he said. ••

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