Members of the family of late Ohio Representative William Mallory Sr. participated in the dedication of the William Mallory Sr. Memorial Highway along Interstate 75 in honor of the family patriarch. From left are Mr. Mallory’s sons Dwane and William Jr., daughter Denise, sons Joe, Mark and Dale, and wife Fannie. Photo provided by the office of House Speaker Clifford Rosenberger
By Courtis Fuller
A short stretch of I-75 that runs between Hopple Street and the Ohio River past Cincinnati’s Union Terminal was on September 19 named in honor of late Ohio lawmaker Representative William L. Mallory Sr. in a ceremony between Ezzard Charles and Kenner in front of the old railroad depot, which now houses Cincinnati Museum Center.
Speaker of the Ohio House Clifford A. Rosenberger (R-Clarksville) joined the Mallory Family, Cincinnati Museum Center President and CEO Elizabeth Pierce, and other public leaders in the Cincinnati area to participate in the memorial highway dedication for Mr. Mallory, former Ohio House majority leader and longtime public servant.
The William Mallory Memorial Highway is adjacent to Mallory’s childhood neighborhood of Cincinnati’s West End, and he often talked about spending a hot weekend afternoon lounging on the grass by the fountain in front of the former railway terminal as a young man. As a state lawmaker, he saved Union Terminal by securing millions of dollars to help convert it into a popular museum attraction.
The section of Interstate 75 dedicated to Mallory Sr. also is not far from the street he had renamed after a world boxing champion Ezzard Charles, who also came from the West End.
“The William Mallory Memorial Highway is another impressive tribute to a man who came from humble beginnings in the West End of Cincinnati but eventually became one of the most powerful political figures in Ohio,’’ Rosenberger said. Mr. Mallory served nearly 30 years in the Ohio House of Representatives. When he retired in 1994, he was the longest serving majority leader in the history of Ohio. He died in 2013 at the age of 82. His son, Mark Mallory, former Cincinnati mayor, also served in the State Legislature. When Mallory Sr. stepped down from office, his son replaced him.
“To have the honor of a highway named after my father is extremely gratifying. It’s recognition of all the work he’s done over all of his years in public life,” Mark Mallory said.
Another son, Dale, also once occupied the seat in the State House once held by his father. He said after talking with his mother, he suggested the renaming happen in the area between Hopple Street and the Ohio River. “That strip is where Dad lived, walked and roamed,” said Dale Mallory.
Mallory Sr. worked on various transportation issues during his time as a lawmaker. He was even appointed to the Highway Safety Advisory Committee by President Jimmy Carter in 1979, and he served on the Board of Director of METRO, the local transit authority.
“So his history with highways is rather significant. We all have a connection in some way to highways in the Mallory family,” Mark Mallory said.