Franco Harris Way unveiled in NFL Hall of Famer's hometown of Mount Holly

Ridgway Street in Mount Holly is now Franco Harris Way, and was unveiled by his son, Dok.

Katherine Scott Image
Tuesday, May 16, 2023
Franco Harris Way unveiled for NFL Hall of Famer in Mount Holly
There were a lot of Steelers jerseys in Eagles country on Tuesday morning, but for a special reason.

MOUNT HOLLY, New Jersey (WPVI) -- There were a lot of Steelers jerseys in Eagles country on Tuesday morning - but for a special reason.

There was street dedication for Steelers Hall of Fame running back Franco Harris in his hometown of Mount Holly, Burlington County.

"He is Mount Holly's favorite son," said Mount Holly Mayor Chris Banks.

Ridgway Street is now Franco Harris Way, and was unveiled by his son, Dok.

"It's quite nice, it's a great honor. I think he'll look down and really appreciate this," said Dok.

Harris, who died in December, went on to be the first Italian American and first African American to be named Super Bowl MVP.

He grew up on the street that now bears his name. His home was right next to Rancocas Valley Regional High School, where Harris began his football career.

RELATED: NFL legend Franco Harris remembered by his beloved hometown in New Jersey

His siblings cheered him on back then, and now.

"We grew up on this street, and we all went to that high school," said his sister, Luana Scott.

"Pittsburgh's home too, but this is where it all started," added sister, Marisa Lattimore.

"We love this town because it has given us so much," said sister, Daniela Miller.

Harris is most widely known for the 'Immaculate Reception' in 1972. The Steelers were trailing the Raiders until his miraculous catch in the final seconds.

His younger brother remembers watching from home.

"My mom was watching in the other room. With 22 seconds to go, she turned off the tv," he explained to laughs. "She was Italian, she loved her Italian music, and she put on Ave Maria."

Officials also announced that December 23rd, the anniversary of the 'Immaculate Reception', will now be known as 'Franco Harris Day' in both Mount Holly and Burlington County.

People traveled from all over the country to honor Harris.

"We all learned so much from Franco, and we miss him dearly," said former NFL running back Lydell Mitchell.

Those who knew Harris recounted the pride he had in Mount Holly, and the pride Mount Holly has for him.

"For our students to look at this and to every day be reminded that this great person walked these same streets that they do is a message that they can be inspired by," said high school Athletic Director Mike Lamb.

"Class of '67. I played football with Franco. I was on the offensive line," said Bob Sapp.

Sapp played with Harris at Rancocas Valley Regional High School and remained friends.

"He always gave back. He never lost track of who he was in the community," he said.

"He was always so proud of Mount Holly- he told everybody. So this is a lovely tribute," said his wife Dana Harris.

"I'm just really excited, that Franco is looking down on us today, and he's smiling, and that just makes me happy," added Scott.