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Highway dedicated to former Governor Kathleen Blanco

Posted at 7:35 PM, Jul 02, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-03 09:37:01-04

LAFAYETTE — A significant portion of Highway 90 is just getting a name change. Crews are installing new signs declaring the road Kathleen Babineaux Blanco Highway, in honor of the former Governor.

The dedication is stretching from Lafayette east to Raceland in Blanco's honor.

Blanco was surrounded by friends, family and other local leaders during a ceremony. She briefly spoke about her term in office and struggles she's endured.

Kathleen Babineaux Blanco Hwy
Kathleen Babineaux Blanco Hwy dedication

"I think that each of us will have challenges along the way and each challenge needs to be met openly and honestly," Blanco said. " It should be met with a good heart and take a good lesson when you go through it. make those lessons, part of your life."

Blanco is the state's first and only female Governor. She also served in other offices. She was elected twice to the state legislature, twice to the public service commission and twice as Lieutenant Governor.

However, the Acadiana natives term came with challenges.

Just a year after her inauguration the New Orleans area changed forever after Hurricane Katrina's landfall.

Blanco faced criticism during the aftermath of the storm on her administrations response. She would push for recovery funds, pressing congress and President Bush for help. She wolud also admit there were miss steps on all sides.

Blanco would later battle a rare eye cancer in 2011 and then the disease reappeared in 2017. She marked her 75th birthday that year by receiving an honorary doctorate from her alma mater UL , using her challenges to inspire the class of 2017.

Blanco now has a highway named in her honor and stated, " That is one of the most remarkable and unique things that's ever happened to me. I never really imagined something like this could come true. I know how hard it is to get it done."