Gov. Chris Christie on Thursday signed bipartisan legislation to rename Route 53 in Morris County after the late Alex DeCroce, who served as Assembly Republican Leader when he died suddenly in January 2012.
DeCroce's wife, District 26 Asw. BettyLou DeCroce, said her late spouse would not like the fuss, but that she felt gratitude.
“Alex served the people of his district and the state because he truly cared about people," she said in a statement. "Those who knew Alex know he never pointed to his accomplishments, he never sought the limelight. He was a true public servant. In fact, he would be quite uncomfortable with this legislation. That being said, I would like to thank the bill’s bipartisan sponsors for initiating this measure and Gov. Christie for signing it.
"Alex was a huge supporter of transportation issues. To have Route 53, which runs through his hometown and district, named for him is truly a great honor to his legacy.”
Asm. Alex DeCroce, who also represented District 26, which covers parts of Morris, Essex and Passaic counties, was an avid proponent of transportation issues in New Jersey, and was a former chairman of the committee. He was the prime sponsor of legislation that renewed the Transportation Trust Fund. He also was a strong advocate for crime victims’ rights.
State Route 53, now the Alex DeCroce Memorial Highway, spans nearly five miles from Route 202 in Morris Plains north through DeCroce's home township, Parsippany, to Bloomfield Avenue in Denville. The route runs east of New Jersey Transit’s Morristown Line and passes under the New Jersey Transit’s Montclair-Boonton Line near the Denville Station.