Few people have the impact on their city and nation that Francis Lewis did, having been a signer of the Declaration of Independence representing New York in the Continental Congress. The wealthy merchant and lawmaker paid a high price for his defiance, as the British destroyed his estate in Whitestone, took his wife captive and treated her so poorly in prison that she died soon after being released. Today, however, it’s likely that few who drive down the boulevard bearing his name give much thought to who he was.

That’s probably also the case for Horace Harding, a banker who personally commissioned engineering studies to get a highway built across Queens to Nassau County — to speed up his ride to his country club. It did get built, and was named Horace Harding Boulevard after he died. When the Long Island Expressway was imposed atop it, Harding’s name was relegated to the superhighway’s service roads.

More may know Guy R. Brewer, namesake of the former New York Boulevard in Jamaica, both because the pioneering Black politician and real estate agent had a great impact on his community and because he lived much more recently.

Today, you don’t see the actual renaming of streets; instead you see the honorary co-naming of them, usually of a single intersection. Communities and officials have decided the co-namings are a great way to provide a lasting tribute to worthy people. Some were heroes, often in uniform, some were civic leaders, many suffered a tragic end.

Here is a look at just some of those who were honored in 2022 and where to find their names in white upon green.

Capt. Thomas Abbey, 82nd Place and 64th Road in Middle Village, not only a motorcycle cop but a pilot in both world wars, who was killed on a rescue mission in 1943.

Det. Raymond Abear, 164th Place and Goethals Avenue in Jamaica Hills, also a policeman, who served with the Special Victims Unit and died at 43 of Covid-19 in April 2020.

Det. Brian Simonsen, Jamaica Avenue and 118th Street in Richmond Hill, an officer killed by friendly fire as police thwarted a store robbery in February 2019.

Sarah Whiting, Holly Avenue and Robinson Street in Flushing, a civic and civil rights activist who founded the afterschool program at PS 24 and served in many groups.

Jimmy Heath, 34th Avenue and 114th Street in Corona, a jazz master who played sax with the likes of Miles Davis and founded the jazz program at Queens College.

Rita Persaud, 103rd Avenue and 92nd Street in Ozone Park, a singer who emigrated from Guyana, who was active in her mandir and was killed in a car crash in 2020.

Don Capalbi, 58th Avenue and 136th Street in Flushing, a civic leader who fought to preserve his area and improve traffic safety, and served as a liaison for Rep. Grace Meng.

Joseph Magnus, 75th Street and 58th Avenue in Middle Village, a Czechoslovak immigrant who hid from the Nazis as a boy and here founded a volunteer ambulance corps.

Bill McCreary, 219th Street and 120th Avenue in Cambria Heights, an Emmy Award-winning newscaster who was on Fox 5 for decades and mentored other journalists.

Lorraine Elliot, Rockaway and Lefferts boulevards in South Ozone Park, a crossing guard who pushed children away from a car in 1980 but was hit and mortally injured.

Det. Anastasios Tsakos, the Francis Lewis Boulevard bridge over the LIE, an officer killed by an alleged drunk driver while he was attending to a fiery crash in 2021. His case differs as the state formally named the bridge for him.

We reported on all these co-namings and more when they occurred, and are sure 2023 will see many further tributes to people we hope will be remembered, as long as their names endure in those crisp white letters on clean green fields.