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Street in Springfield named in honor of former State Rep. Benjamin Swan

Street in Springfield named in honor of former State Rep. Benjamin Swan
Updated: Jun. 18, 2022 at 6:45 PM EDT
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SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Former State Representative Benjamin Swan now has a street sign dedicated to him known as Ben Swan Way. The official ceremony took place Saturday morning at Mason Square in Springfield.

The man who the sign is named after, former State Representative Benjamin Swan, served in the State House for more than two decades. The sign is where his office was located, 815 State Street. Swan was at a loss for words.

“I don’t know what to say other than great,” Swan said. “This is a great feeling.”

Swan, also known as a local civil rights leader, balanced helping the community he loved and his family. Many people from his family, including his great-grandkids, were there for the dedication.

“It’s not always easy to live in a community, make a contribution to that community, and then take care of your family,” Swan told us. “Give your family and children the attention they need, and that’s what I tried to do.”

Swan’s brother, Fred Allen Swan, mentioned how his brother would get into good trouble for civil rights. Ben would always call Fred on where to go to march. Everything the Swan family did, they supported one another, as told by the many things Swan’s kids and family members said about him.

“It’s a family affair,” Fred said. “It’s a family thing. What Ben represents is symbolic of our family. Whatever Ben did or didn’t do was symbolic of the family.”

Many others talked about Swan at the street sign dedication on Saturday, describing how he has impacted the community and what he has done personally to help them better their lives.

“I don’t live in his district, but as a human being, he reaches out to all humanity that is suffering,” said Reverend Torli Krua of Boston. “For the past 22 years, while he was in the House of Representatives, he visited my country three times, Liberia.”

Swan told Western Mass News how he was feeling the love on this special day for him.

“I really feel appreciated because of the people here,” he said. “I love these people.”