What is the American Legion highway fatality marker program?


Since 1953 the American Legion has been placing “white cross markers” at sites where fatal accidents have occurred.

These fatality markers are a public service message to remind drivers to “Please Drive Carefully.” They are a sobering reminder of a fatal traffic accident, a place where a human being lost his/her life. They are found within the borders of Montana, along state and federal highways, secondary and forest service roads, and even city streets. One white marker is erected for each fatal traffic accident.

There are those who might wonder why some accidents are not marked and others have been removed. The reason may be that the accident occurred in an area where there is no active Legion post or the post in that area is not participating in the program. Local posts also remove the white markers when they interfere with road construction. If the route has been changed or the obstacle causing the accident removed, the white crosses will only be replaced at the request of a family member. In addition, a family may request no marker be placed or replaced, and that request will be honored.

Remember, these markers are not intended as memorials but as highway safety reminders. Obstructing the white marker defeats the purpose. However, if you wish to place wreaths or other decorations at the site, attaching memorials (for example, flowers) to the pole below the cross is acceptable.

If you have any specific questions about this program, the American Legion, or veterans’ benefits in general, please contact your local American Legion post. In Lewistown, call Dean Martin, Post 16 Service Officer at 366-2790 or call the local club at 538-9086 and leave a message.



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