ALTON - Madison County Transit (MCT) held a ribbon cutting at Alton's Transfer Station located at 6th and Piasa Street in Alton Thursday afternoon. The ceremony was for a new plaza dedicated to former Senator Bill Haine and his wife of over 50 years Anna for their lifetimes of work with MCT.
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Bill served as the first Chairman of the Madison County Transit District, as a Madison County Board Member, as Madison County State’s Attorney, and as State Senator representing the 56th District of Illinois, all while promoting and supporting MCT.
Bill died on August 16, 2021, but his work was not forgotten.
Alton Mayor David Goins and Bill's wife Anna both spoke at the event with many members of the Haine family in attendance.
Goins remembered the times when he first met Bill. It was back when Goins began his career as an Alton police officer for several years.
"I'm just honored today to be here to dedicate this plaza to him and to the recognition of his wife," Goins said.
"He was a champion," he added. "He was a champion for justice, he was a champion for victim's rights, and as a Senator, he was a champion and advocate for all the constituents that he served."
Bill's wife Anna delivered a prepared speech regarding her late husband talking about how he loved nothing more than his family. She said that the two had seven children and soon to be 42 grandchildren.
Tom Haine, Bill and Anna Haine’s son, and the Madison County State’s Attorney said it was a very kind gesture to honor both his mom and dad.
“My dad has had a lot to do with bringing the institution to fruition and he understood the value of making sure everyone had access to transportation in a quality and an affordable way,” he said.
“I think he would be very happy my mom is also being honored. She was instrumental in everything my dad did. My dad was a fourth-generation Alton resident and I am a fifth generation. We love Alton and love Madison County Transportation Services and all the ways institutions like that can make our community better.”
After everyone spoke the Haine family posed for a picture in front of the plaza and had an official ribbon cutting on the new dedicated area.