STATEHOUSE (Oct. 30, 2020) – A Bloomington bridge is now officially renamed in honor of a fallen Monroe County sheriff's deputy following a resolution authored by State Rep. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville) during the 2020 legislative session.
In 2008, Monroe County Sheriff Deputy Sarah Irene Haylett-Jones was struck by a vehicle on State Road 45 while directing traffic around a stranded vehicle. Responding to the incident, local law enforcement blocked intersections along the route taken by emergency responders taking Haylett-Jones to a hospital, which included the 2nd Street bridge over Interstate 69.
Signs during an Oct. 28 ceremony were installed at the bridge by the Indiana Department of Transportation officially renaming it the Sarah Irene Haylett-Jones Memorial Bridge.
"This is symbolic in that not only will Sarah never be forgotten for her service to her community and country, but also for all her fellow law enforcement officers who put their lives on the line to protect us," Mayfield said. "The sacrifice Sarah Irene Haylett-Jones made could be asked of any of those who serve on any given day."
Margie Clouse was one of the first responders at the scene. She initiated the idea for a marker memorializing Haylett-Jones.
"I made a promise many years ago that I would never allow Sarah to be forgotten," Clouse said. "I pray that I have finally fulfilled that promise."
Haylett-Jones succumbed to her injuries two days after the accident. A Coldwater, Mich., native, she served with the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office for eight months. Prior to that she served with Alabama’s Montgomery Police Department and was a U.S. Air Force veteran.
Kim Haylett, mother of Haylett-Jones, said her daughter decided she wanted to go into law enforcement when she was 15. Haylett-Jones enrolled in a criminal justice program her junior year of high school and participated in the Michigan State Police's explorers program, earning the rank of captain.
"Our family carries Sarah in our hearts every day," Haylett said. "We have the blessing of her memories, and the hope she's never forgotten."
The driver who struck Haylett-Jones was using a cell phone when the crash occurred. During the 2020 legislative session, Haylett testified in support of House Enrolled Act 1070, which is now a new law restricting motorists in Indiana from holding cell phones and other electronic devices when driving.
Mayfield's House Concurrent Resolution 17 was co-authored by Monroe County State Reps. Jeff Ellington (R-Bloomington), Bob Heaton (R-Terre Haute), Chris May (R-Bedford) and Matt Pierce (D-Bloomington).
State Rep. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville) represents House District 60,
which includes portions of Morgan and Monroe counties.
Click here for a high-resolution photo.
PHOTO CAPTION: Individuals who helped with the passage of a House Resolution authored by State Rep. Peggy Mayfield (R-Martinsville) to rename the 2nd Street bridge over Interstate 69 in Bloomington after a sheriff’s deputy killed in the line of duty gather under one of the signs installed by the Indiana Department of Transportation on Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2020. Pictured are (from left) Wayne and Kim Haylett, parents of Monroe County Sheriff Deputy Sarah Irene Haylett-Jones; Mayfield; Margie Clouse, one of the first responders who took Haylett-Jones to the hospital; State Rep. Bob Heaton (R-Terre Haute), a co-author of the House Resolution; Chris Jones, widower of Haylett-Jones; and State Rep. Matt Pierce (D-Bloomington), a co-author of the House Resolution.