More than 75 years after his death as the first casualty of World War II from here, Lt. Carson W. Bounds was memorialized with a highway dedication last week.

Bounds, who grew up in the Bloomo community, enlisted in the Air Force at the outset of World War II and was just 22 years old when he was killed in action on Jan. 30, 1943 in Tunisia.

On Thursday, representatives from the local VFW, Transportation Commissioner Dick Hall, State Sen. Jenifer Branning and Bounds’ nephew, Rep. Scott Bounds, gathered to name a stretch of Highway 16 east as the Carson W. Bounds Memorial Highway.

“It’s important that we remember not only the sacrifice that he made,” Bounds said. “But every other individual in every war who has served and sacrificed their lives in defense (of), and for freedom for, this country.”

Bounds was a first lieutenant with the 33rd Fighter Group, 58th Fighter Squadron. He was shot down during a routine patrol, his nephew said.

He was posthumously honored with the Air Medal, the Purple Heart, the World War II Victory Medal.

He is buried in Plot H, Row 3, Grave 5 of the North Africa American Cemetery near Carthage, Tunisia.

Bounds is among the 3,835 American Gold Star casualties with close ties to Mississippi.

The local VFW on Highway 16 is named for Bounds as well.