ARTBA Provides Funds to Children of Fallen Highway Workers

The American Road & Transportation Builders Association is providing 10 children of highway workers killed or permanently disabled on the job with post-high school financial assistance for the 2021-2022 school year.

Photo by Lanford Brothers

The group said in a statement that fiscal aid comes through the ARTBA Foundation’s Lanford Family Highway Worker Memorial Scholarship fund.

That fund was established in 1999 with a gift from two Virginia highway contractors and their companies: Stan Lanford of Lanford Brothers and Jack Lanford with Adams Construction Company.

Students awarded scholarships through the fund this year include:

  • Caitlyn Rains of Proctor, Arkansas: Her father, James “Bubba” Rains, died in 2013 after a vehicle hit him while he was working for APAC Tennessee in a nighttime construction zone . Caitlyn is studying respiratory therapy at Arkansas State University, where she will be a senior.
  • Stan Jones, Jr., of Gaston, South Carolina: His father, Standra Jones, Sr., died in 2007 after a vehicle stuck him while working in a South Carolina Department of Transportation construction zone. Stan will be in his third year of graduate studies in architecture at Clemson University in South Carolina.
  • Willie Blevins of Athens of Georgia: Willie’s mother, Kathy Blevins, worked for the Gwinnett County Department of Transportation. She had just finished painting turn-lane lines when a vehicle hit her truck and killed her in 2004. Willie is a mechanical engineering major at the University of Georgia.
  • Amy McNeil Graves of Lumberton, Texas: Amy’s father, Jeffrey McNeil, died in 2005 after a vehicle hit him while working for the Texas Department of Transportation. Amy is in registered nursing school at Lamar State College in Port Arthur.
  • Jenna Jares of West Texas: Jenna’s father, Gregory Jares, died in the line of duty in 2001 while working for the Texas Department of Transportation special crews. Jenna is a junior studying occupational therapy at the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor in Belton.
  • Hadley Voudrie of Trussville, Alabama: Hadley’s father, Darin Voudrie, died after a vehicle hit him while working for Jefferson County Roads and Transportation in 2015. Hadley will be a senior at the University of Montevallo, where she studies elementary education.
  • Carolyn Lillis of Philomath, Oregon: Carolyn’s father, Scott Lillis, suffered permanent disabilities in 2015 while driving in a work zone for his employer, Knife River Corporation. Carolyn will be a senior at Oregon State University in Corvallis where she studies physical therapy.
  • Mashawn Blubaugh of Howard, Ohio: Mashawn’s father, Shawn Blubaugh, died in 2010 while working for the Ohio Department of Transportation. Mashawn will be a senior at Kent State University and is majoring in early childhood education.
  • Andrea Pair of Spiro, Oklahoma: Andrea’s father, Shannon Pair, died after a vehicle struck him while working for Time Striping in 1998. Andrea is in her final year of graduate school at Harding University’s College of Pharmacy in Searcy, Ark.
  • Joann Jones of Bluffton, Indiana: Joann’s father, Dale, died after a vehicle hit him in 2009 while working for the City of Anderson Street Department. Joann will be a sophomore studying biology at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.

ARTBA noted that more than 100 highway workers die every year in roadway construction and maintenance incidents, with thousands more seriously injured.

Since its creation, the Lanford Family Scholarship fund has helped students of fallen highway workers from 32 states pursue undergraduate and graduate courses as well as technical training.

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