Bill to name a portion of state Route 37 in Ogdensburg after ‘Chuck’ Kelly passes Senate
Friday, June 14, 2019 - 6:12 am

OGDENSBURG -- A bill to name a portion of state Route 37 in Ogdensburg, the “Charles ‘Chuck’ Kelly Memorial Highway” has passed the Senate, according to Sen. Patty Ritchie, who introduced it.

Kelly died in October at age 83.

The bill (S.1827) calls for the portion of roadway from the intersection of state Route 37 and New York Avenue in the City of Ogdensburg to the intersection of state Route 37 and state Route 37-A to be named in Chuck Kelly’s honor.

Kelly spent 56 years of his life as a journalist and was publisher of the Ogdensburg Journal.

Kelly “also won numerous awards for his work, using the relationships he cultivated along the way to help the city of Ogdensburg achieve success,” Ritchie’s office said.

“He was instrumental in efforts to locate new state correctional facilities in Ogdensburg, as well as successfully helping keep the Ogdensburg Correctional Facility from closing in 2011. He also fought alongside local leaders to prevent the closure of the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center in 2013. It was because of his strong advocacy for these facilities that Senator Ritchie specifically selected the portion of New York State Route 37 that runs in front of them to be named after Chuck Kelly,” Ritchie’s office said.

In addition to being a journalist, Kelly spent time in the United States Army and during his service was stationed overseas in both Germany and France.

Kelly also served on the boards of numerous organizations including the Ogdensburg Boys and Girls Club, the St. Lawrence County Cancer Society, the Ogdensburg Volunteer Rescue Squad, the Greater Ogdensburg Chamber of Commerce, the A. Barton Hepburn Hospital Development Council and Foundation, Ogdensburg Catholic Charities, the Ogdensburg Recreation Commission and the St. Lawrence Eastern Ontario Commission to which he was appointed by then Governor Hugh Carey, among many others, Ritchie’s office said.

“Chuck Kelly will forever be remembered for being a true champion for the North Country. His contributions as a journalist and an advocate for our region have made Ogdensburg and the entire region a better place to live,” Ritchie, R-Heuvelton, said in a prepared statement. “In renaming a portion of Ogdensburg’s main roadway in his honor, we are ensuring people can reflect and will never forget the impact his efforts and his example have had on most everyone who drives it.”