Houston Texans defensive end J.J. Watt raised over $19.5 million for relief efforts for those in Houston affected by Hurricane Harvey, and as a result, a petition was started to rename a Texas highway after the football star.
The petition, which started Thursday on change.org, calls on Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner to rename State Highway 99 The JJ Watt Parkway in honor of Watt’s efforts to help his community:
JJ Watt has been an exemplary humanitarian and Houstonian. He has given to our great city more than we could ever have asked for! Through his fundraising efforts over 12.6 million dollars was raised to aide Houstonians suffering loss due to Hurricane Harvey! As a token of our appreciation not only should SH 99 bear his number but also his name!
The Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) says that the Texas Transportation Commission is the group that approves any changes to the state highway system.
“Memorial Highways are named through the state legislature or by a local government which works with the appropriate TxDOT district for highway signing,” the TxDOT website states.
Gov. Abbott appeared to express his interest in the idea of renaming the highway after Watt in a tweet on Monday.
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) September 5, 2017
Watt not only raised money for the victims of Hurricane Harvey, on Sunday he tweeted pictures of supplies that he helped distribute throughout the city.
This is what we’ll be distributing today pic.twitter.com/YVyOC4jRaj
— JJ Watt (@JJWatt) September 3, 2017
10 semi trucks.
Countless incredible volunteers.
Just the beginning. pic.twitter.com/xmN40M4hFA
— JJ Watt (@JJWatt) September 4, 2017
According to the fundraiser set up by Watt on YouCaring, more than 181,319 donors have donated $19,589,664.