JEFFERSON COUNTY, N.Y. (WWTI) — A section of local highway is being renamed to honor a fallen police officer.

Village of Dexter Police Chief Samuel A. Johnson, Sr. was shot and killed in the line of duty on September 11, 1987 after responding to a call of shots fired. A the time of his death, Chief Johnson had served the Dexter Police for over a decade and was survived by his wife and five children.

Assemblyman Mark Walczyk and Senator Patty Ritchie sponsored the legislation to have the portion of State Highway 180 designated in Johnson’s honor. The legislation has now been signed into law by Governor Hochul.

A section of State Highway 180 crossing the Black River from the Village of Dexter in the Town of Brownville and into the Town of Hounsfield, within Jefferson County, will be renamed. The Department of Transportation will install signs to designate the highway and bridge on the road as “Chief Samuel A. Johnson, Sr. Memorial Bridge.”

“I am grateful the governor signed this bill into law so Chief Johnson’s memory and sacrifice can be remembered for generations to come,” Assemblyman Walczyk said. “His sacrifice should never be forgotten and now every time we cross the bridge over the Black River, we will remember the courage, sacrifice and hard work of men and women like Chief Johnson.”

“Chief Sam Johnson is an individual who put his life on the line to protect others,” Senator Patty Ritchie said. “While bravely serving his community, he made the ultimate sacrifice. Renaming this bridge in his honor is one small way we can not only pay tribute to his heroism, but also, never forget the impact he made on his community.”