‘It Means More Than I Can Say’: Needham Bridge Renamed in Memory of Fallen Marine Lieutenant

Lt. Joseph R. Fandrey died in a helicopter training accident when he was 25 years old

More than two decades after a Marine's death in a helicopter training accident, a Route 128 bridge was renamed in memory of the Needham, Massachusetts, native.

Lt. Joseph R. Fandrey died when his helicopter collided with another one over the skies of Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina, on May 10, 1996. He was 25.

“It means more than I can say to know that Joe will be remembered when we’re gone,” said his mother, Gloria Fandrey. “He was the life of the party and the center of attention, always.”

“Joe and his family were and are part of the fabric of this town,” said Needham selectman Dan Matthews, who spoke at Saturday’s dedication ceremony.

The overpass, which is located along Highland Avenue, was renamed the Lt. Joseph R. Fandrey Memorial Bridge after Gov. Charlie Baker signed a bill into law that was introduced by State Sen. Mike Rush.

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