On Thursday September 28th the Jamaica Way Bridge in Jamaica Plain was renamed the Lance Corporal Alexander Arredondo & Brian Arredondo Memorial Bridge to honor the memory of the brothers. Alex Arredondo was killed on duty in Iraq in 2004 and his brother Brian was lost to suicide in 2011.
Governor Charlie Baker, State Representative Jeffrey Sanchez, parents Carlos Arredondo and Victoria Foley, step-mother Mélida Arredondo, family, friends and several state officials were on hand to celebrate the dedication of the bridge.
“We are honored to dedicate this bridge to the memory of Lance Corporal Alexander Arredondo in recognition of his service to this nation and to his younger brother Brian, who displayed courage and bravery in the face of mental health challenges following his brother’s death,” said Governor Baker. “This bridge will stand as an important reminder of the sacrifices made by our nation’s veterans and the families who support them in service.”
The bridge is the first in Massachusetts to be named in honor of someone lost to suicide. Carlos Arredondo, President and Co-founder of the Arredondo Family Foundation said, “This is a great honor. The memory of both of our sons continues to inspire us in the work we do today. We are especially grateful that through this bridge dedication, Massachusetts is acknowledging the sacrifice of our soldiers, veterans and their families, and recognizing the fact that suicide is occurring as well among military family members.” The Arredondo Family Foundation was established to provide help to veterans and their families dealing with suicide, grief and depression.
On April 15, 2013, Carlos and Mélida Arredondo were thrust into the global spotlight when Carlos helped to save the life of Jeff Bauman in the immediate moments after the Boston Marathon tragedy. But their story – and the work they are doing to support the families of the fallen and military veterans – began many years before the Marathon bombing.
The Arredondo Family Foundation was established by Carlos and Mélida Arredondo in 2015. The mission of the Arredondo Family Foundation is to empower military families in the prevention of military related suicides and to provide support through education, financial relief and support services. On October 22nd, a number of individuals will run the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, DC on behalf of the Arredondo Family Foundation.