In 2009, Staff Sgt. Mark Anthony Wojciechowski was killed while serving in Iraq, but years before that, “Tony Wojo,” was just a teenager riding his bike to and from work in Union Township.
In honor of the United States Marine, on Sept. 6 several of the roads where Wojciechowski road his bike were designated as Wojo Way, and Wojciechowski’s friends and family members attended a ceremony to remember his sacrifice.
“Tony was brilliant and fun,” Teresa Dillinger, Tony’s mother, said about him at the ceremony. “He had a passion for life and was dedicated to the Marine Corps. In his 25 short years of life he left an impact and will not be forgotten.”
The Glen Este graduate joined the Marine Corps when he was 17-years-old. He was deployed to Iraq first in 2007 and then again in 2009. On April 30, 2009, Wojciechowski was killed while taking part in combat operations.
Dillinger said keeping Tony’s memory alive has turned into her passion and her mission, and she approached Clermont County Engineer Pat Manger with the idea of Wojo Way.
“She really thought this was an appropriate road to have named in her son’s honor,” Manger said about the section of road where Wojciechowski used to ride his bike.
And so Manger began working to have the roads, which include part of Eastgate Boulevard, all of Ferguson Drive and part of Ivy Pointe Boulevard, in Union Township, designated as Wojo Way.
Manger worked to make the road designation a reality, and also worked to get a monument made for the roadway.
“I know when I pass by this monument I’ll always remember Tony and the dedication he had,” Manger said.
County and state officials as well as friends and family members of Wojciechowski were present at the designation ceremony, and took the time to remember and honor the serviceman.
“He loved his country more than he loved himself,” Congresswoman Jean Schmidt said about Wojciechowski at the ceremony. “Today’s unveiling of Wojo Way demonstrates a community’s love for a bright shining star.”
A stone monument was also unveiled at the ceremony with “Wojo Way” engraved in it, along with Wojciechowski’s day of birth and death.
“I am very proud of it,” Dillinger said about the stone monument. “It means a lot to me, and I know he is proud of it.”
Teresa’s husband, and Wojciechowski’s step-father, Tony Dillinger, agreed.
“I hope all that pass through realize his sacrifice and what he did for our country,” he said.