Sugarcreek bridge dedicated to local veteran

As the newly named Staff Sgt. Richard James Mulholland Memorial Bridge was being dedicated, the flow of emotion and sentiment flowed as freely as the waters of Sandy Creek beneath it.

The ceremony to the veteran from Sugarcreek, who was born in 1992 and passed away in 2018, took place on March 21. The bridge near Cooperstown is part of Route 427.

Mulholland joined the military after graduation from Venango Catholic High School. He served two deployments in Afghanistan and was part of the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division.

Upon discharge, he went on to serve in the National Guard, as well as working as a corrections officer at the state correctional institution in Forest County.

“The bridge is where Richard grew up when he was a kid,” said his father, Rich Mulholland. “He would fish there, he would go down their and swim with some of the neighbor kids.”

State Rep. R. Lee James, whose office was instrumental with the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and others in the dedication of the bridge to Mulholland, said bridges are dedicated in an effort to honor service personnel; “to remember the service members that have sacrificed for our country.”

James described the ceremony as “very emotional” and it was obvious “those that knew him liked, respected and cared for him deeply. Richard Mulholland served with distinction and took care of his men. His sacrifices for his country won’t be forgotten.”