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Resolution would rename section of Route 150 for fallen deputy

Jane Carlson
Tri States Public Radio
A memorial for Knox County Sheriff's Office deputy Nicholas D. Weist at the Knox County Law Enforcement Center in Galesburg. Weist was killed in the line of duty on April 29.

A joint resolution in the Illinois legislature would rename a section of U.S. Route 150 for a fallen Knox County sheriff’s deputy.

“Today we’re here to honor and recognize a heroic individual,” said State Representative Dan Swanson, R-Alpha, this week on the House floor in Springfield.

Knox County Sheriff’s Deputy Nick Weist died April 29 in the line of duty.

Swanson told legislators Weist’s shift was over that morning and he was headed home to his family in Viola.

But when he heard his fellow law enforcement officers were in pursuit of an armed subject in the area, he stopped to help.

The car chase started in Galesburg and ended where Weist was setting spike strips in the road just south of Alpha on Route 150.

That’s where Weist, 34, was struck by the subject’s vehicle and died at the scene.


But Swanson said the deputy’s actions likely saved the lives of children.

“At the time of the incident just a mile away, AlWood Elementary School children were crossing Route 150 to attend school that sits at a corner along the highway,” Swanson said.

Now Swanson is sponsoring legislation to rename that stretch of two-lane highway road between Galesburg and Alpha the “Deputy Sheriff Weist Memorial Highway.”

Signage would be posted along the roadway honoring him.

Members of Weist’s family and representatives of the Knox County Sheriff’s Department family were in the gallery as Swanson introduced the joint resolution and honored the deputy’s service.

Swanson said there’s a great deal of support for the resolution, which now must pass a majority in the House and the Senate.

That vote will likely be in the next general assembly.

“I think it will mean a lot to all of us to have a way of recognizing someone who sacrificed and gave their life in protecting,” Swanson said.

Republican State Senator Neil Anderson of Moline will carry the resolution through the upper chamber.

Tri States Public Radio produced this story.  TSPR relies on financial support from our readers and listeners in order to provide coverage of the issues that matter to west central Illinois, southeast Iowa, and northeast Missouri. As someone who values the content created by TSPR's news department please consider making a financial contribution.

Jane Carlson is TSPR's regional reporter.