Football legend Major Harris gets street named after him in the Hill District


 by Ashley G. Woodson, For New Pittsburgh Courier

Seemingly everyone came out to celebrate College Football Hall of Famer Major Harris getting a street renamed in his honor…and it’s where he grew up. The Hill District officially renamed the corner of Elmore Street and  Bentley Drive, “Major Harris Way.” It happened on a sunny Friday afternoon, July 15.

Harris is best known in his high school days at Brashear for throwing a 79-yard touchdown pass to beat Indiana High School. He went on to attend West Virginia University where he became a quarterback and led the Mountaineers to an undefeated regular season in 1988 and a berth in the national championship game.

Harris wants to impact others and he hopes others seeing his name in the Hill District will inspire others in the neighborhood.

“Anytime you see somebody and talk to them and they have a street named after them, then you can get that done,” Harris told the New Pittsburgh Courier.

Mayor Ed Gainey was in attendance along with Chief of Staff Jake Wheatley, Pittsburgh City Councilman R. Daniel Lavelle and Harris’ family and friends.

Mayor Ed Gainey, Major Harris and Pittsburgh City Councilman R. Daniel Lavelle (PHOTOS BY ASHLEY WOODSON)

“What Major Harris did for not only the Hill District, but West Virginia University, was the ultimate sacrifice and he should have been (paid) for his likeness,” the mayor said. “We thank Councilman Lavelle and others for renaming the street in his honor. I’m not surprised that he honed his skills on the streets of the Hill District. Today is a great day because a lot of times in the African American community, our heroes don’t get recognized. We don’t tell our young people why our heroes are so great. In order to move this city forward, the stories of Major Harris and many others has to be told.”

Chief of Staff Jake Wheatley unveiling the new street sign while Major Harris and mother, Sandy, look on.

In November 2021, West Virginia University retired Major Harris’ No. 9 jersey.

Hill District friends showing love to Major Harris

Mayor Ed Gainey WITH former WVU football player Mike Booth



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