Highway named in honor of fallen East Tennessee marine

(WBIR) The sacrifice of a Lenoir City marine killed while fighting for our country will be remembered forever thanks to a new dedication.

Lance Corporal William Koprince Jr. died in Iraq in December of 2006 after an improvised explosive device blew up behind him. He was on his second tour.

Family, friends, and area veterans gathered Saturday at the Loudon County Visitor's Bureau for the official dedication of the Lcpl. William C. Koprince Jr. Memorial Highway. A portion of I-75 between mile markers 81 and 83 is now named in the fallen marine's honor.

For his mother, it's more than just a memorial to her son.

"I thought what a great way to remind people on a daily basis about my son and therefore they reflect not just on my son, but on the cost of freedom," Bernice Koprince said.

It's also a chance for the fallen marine's memory to live on.

"I know when I die that that sign is going to be out there and people are going to be driving by it and maybe they'll not know him but maybe it will spark an interest for them to do some research and find out about my son and find out that freedom has a great cost," she added.