Albany, NY (July 3, 2012)
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today signed legislation to designate a portion of Route 7 in the Town of Pittstown in Rensselaer County as the Brigadier General James Kenney Memorial Highway.
"Brigadier General Kenney was an all-American man who worked passionately throughout his entire life to protect and build our nation," Governor Cuomo said. "He started his military career earlier than most people graduate high school and continued to work to improve his community years after he had officially retired. Brigadier General Kenney never stopped working to help others and I commend the bill sponsors for taking the lead in renaming this portion of Route 7 to commemorate the Brigadier General's service."
Kenney, a lifelong resident of the Town of Hoosick, started his military career at the age of 15, prior to graduating from the former Walter A. Wood Memorial High School, when he joined the New York Guard and served as a member until joining the United States Navy on November 6, 1945. A student at Siena College at the time of his enlistment in the Navy, Kenney completed nearly two years active duty prior to his honorable discharge from that branch prior to his immediate enlistment in the New York Army National Guard with whom he served until 1977, working for the New York State Division of Military and Naval Affairs, where he was promoted to Brigadier General. Following his service in the Army National Guard, Brigadier General Kenney enlisted into the Army Reserves where he was assigned to selective service unit as Commander, eventually retiring from this position and military service on December 6, 1987.
For his honorable service, Kenney received the World War II Victory Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Army Commendation Medal, the New York State Conspicuous Service Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal with Devices, the State Military Commendation Medal, the 35-Year Long and Faithful Service Medal, the Duty and Aid to Civil Authorities Medal with Three Clusters, the State Recruiting Medal, and, various New York Guard ribbons. Involved in the community as well, Kenney was a member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks, the American Legion, the National Guard Association, the National Rifle Association, the Town of Hoosick Rescue Squad, the Hoosick Planning Board, and, the Immaculate Conception Church, among others.
Senator Roy McDonald said, "From Memorial Day to Independence day we honor the memory of the sacrifices made by members of our armed services. This highway dedication, for Brigadier General James Kennedy, is a constant reminder of his outstanding service along with a reminder of the commitment and dedication made by so many additional Rensselaer County Veterans."
Assembly Member Tony Jordan said, "This is an important piece of legislation for the community and I am happy that the Governor has signed it."