Columnist takes familiar journey on Memory Lane
It's time for another backward glance at newsmakers of Yesteryear via the archives of The Valley Independent and its predecessors, The Monessen Daily Independent and The Charleroi Mail.
70 years ago
Monday, Oct. 18, 1943
(Oct. 17 was a Sunday)
The first snowfall of the season, albeit light, blanketed Pittsburgh and other parts of western Pennsylvania, including the Mid-Mon Valley, this morning. The last time snow fell prior to Oct, 18 was in 1937.
Brownsville defeated Monongahela, 28-0, in a Big Five Conference game Saturday night at the Brownies' Stadium. Bert Sutton scored two touchdowns to lead coach Earl Bruce's team. Paul “Noodie” Jones, the leading scorer in the WPIAL, and Bill Sutton, tallied the other six-pointers, and Johns and Bert Sutton tacked on the extra points.
Two of the district's outstanding Major League baseball players will be honored at banquets in the area. The Donora Zinc Works Employees Athletic Association will salute native-born Stan Musial of the St. Louis Cardinals tonight. Meanwhile, Jimmy Russell, Pittsburgh Pirates star from Fayette City, will be honored tomorrow night at a similar fete at Nemacolin Country Club. Among the guests set for the Musial event are Honus Wagner, the Pirates' grand old man of baseball; George Susce, Cleveland Indians coach, and Charley Kelcher, chief scout of the Cardinals.
60 years ago
Saturday, Oct. 17, 1953
Special railroad routing was required for a giant $59,000 power shovel which arrived in Charleroi yesterday for a coal-stripping job in Fallowfield Township. The equipment, moved on heavy-duty flat cars, was consigned from Lorain, Ohio, to Dragan & Son in Belle Vernon and will be unloaded at the Latchem siding of the Pennsylvania Railroad Company on Monday.
Sparked by Billy Russell, who scored three touchdowns, Donora's unbeaten Dragons rolled over Central Catholic of Pittsburgh, 35-0, on Saturday night for their sixth straight win. Butch Gaydos scored on a blocked punt by Francis Osleger and Winslow Sloan ran 44 yards for the other DHS six-pointers. Ron Bozik added the extra points, four on kicks and another on a run.
Meeting in regular session at the Vernon Junior High School library, the Belle Vernon School Board approved purchase of an incinerator for use in the junior high from S.E. Carson and Sons of Charleroi. Attending the meeting were board president Robert Lange, secretary J.E. Kuhn, George Trozzo, Joseph Hoffman, solicitor John Costello, supervising principal George E. Fee and principal Laura Fee.
Steele Auditorium, the newest building on the California State Teachers College campus, will be dedicated today during the annual Dads Day celebration. Dr. Robert Steele, former president of the college, for whom the auditorium is named, will make the dedicatory address.
50 years ago
Thursday, Oct. 17, 1963
Excitement is building for the second annual Mon Valley Auto Show next Tuesday and Wednesday at Riverview Skating Rink on Route 906 between Monessen and Belle Vernon. Jack Roley of Roley Brothers in Belle Vernon is chairman of the event, which is sponsored by 15 area new car dealers and The Valley Independent. Roley said 40 new model vehicles will be displayed and door prizes will include a trip to New York City.
American Legion Auxiliary Unit 165 of Bentleyville met with Ruth Gorondy presiding.
Betty Fleming, rehabilitation chairman, reminded members to bring stamped Christmas cards to the Nov. 5 meeting to be sent to patients at Veterans hospitals.
Mon Valley Ski Club is planning a busy 1963-64 season. Leading the group are Pat Dodaro, president; Tony Cinquegrani, vice president; Claudia Koltash, corresponding secretary; Betty Van Bremen, recording secretary; Angela Raitano, treasurer, and Bart Raitano, director.
Rostraver upset Bellmar, 13-6, in a junior high football feature at Bellmar High Stadium.
Fullback Sam McBeth and halfback Ron Revak scored for coach Don Williams' Little Leopards, now 1-3-0. Revak added the extra point on a run. Al Neupaver tallied for Bellmar, now 2-2-0.
40 years ago
Friday, Oct. 17, 1973
Bello, Hogan and Checchi Designs, 415 Schoonmaker Ave., Monessen, is calling attention to its paper and paraphernalia products including note pads, wax seals, letter openers, desk organizers, address books, stationery and diaries.
Keystone Bakery venues in Monessen, Charleroi and Belle Vernon have these specials this weekend: luscious blackberry pie, $1.19; sunny orange cake made with fresh oranges, $1.29; raisin loaf, 79 cents; jelly fishes candy, 69 cents a pound.
President Margie Lopez was in charge as the Hungarian Ladies Auxiliary of Pricedale met in the social hall of the Hungarian Club. Helen Kilvady and Rose Mericheck were welcomed as new members.
30 years ago
Monday, Oct. 17, 1983
Danielle Casson, 14, of Donora, was chosen as the winner of a new 10-speed bicycle in a contest for Valley Independent news carriers. Mark Krassa, district circulation supervisor at the newspaper, presented the bike to Miss Casson, who was accompanied to the festivities by her father, Donald Casson.
Monongahela Valley Catholic topped Carmichaels, 27-13, Saturday night at Legion Field in Donora. Kevin Hoover led the Spartans with three touchdowns and 209 yards rushing, while sophomore Jack Kerekes drew high praise for his work at quarterback in place of injured senior Scott Phillips. MVC's Jesse Pelligrino also turned in a strong performance as he held the Mikes' J.L. Lechner, the top receiver in the WPIAL, to two catches and 43 yards. Chuck Hillman scored the other touchdown for the Spartans and Joe Hudock kicked the extra points.
Monongahela Volunteer Fire Co. kicked of its annual fund drive today with this theme: “Will you help us so in your time of need we can help you?” Dan Wineland, campaign chairman, said the Monongahela firemen respond to an average of 100 fire and emergency calls each year.
20 years ago
Saturday, Oct. 16, 1993
(Oct. 17 was a Sunday)
Homecoming Queens crowned last night at area high schools were Susan Spridik, Bentworth; Karen Bilski, Belle Vernon Area, and Kristie Krzmaric, Elizabeth Forward.
Heather Dow, 21, of Belle Vernon, received a check for $75,000 that she won in the Saturday Spin of the Pennsylvania Lottery. Dow, assistant manager of the Belle Vernon Atlantic service station, was presented with the check by Bob Wyner, owner of the service station, and Joseph “Chip” DeFelicis, Pittsburgh area Lottery representative.
Ringgold strengthened its playoff hopes with a 35-12 Quad A West Conference win over Baldwin. Greg Lomax led coach Chuck Colborn's Rams with four touchdowns, 184 yards rushing on 12 carries and an 86-yard kickoff return. Jamont Kinds scored the other Ringgold TD and Justin Hillman kicked five extra points.
10 years ago
Friday, Oct. 17, 2003
Monessen City Council has banned the presence of junk vehicles on residential properties and has announced its intention to set limits on many of the vehicles are permitted at gasoline and service stations and salvage yards. Council declared junk vehicles as “threats to public health and safety because they have become havens for wild animals.”
Carroll Middle School volleyball teams swept Fort Couch. The eight-graders, now 9-1, posted a 2-1 victory as Danielle Brletich (17) and Brianna Pry (10) combined for 27 points. The seventh-graders, also 9-1, were led by Rachel Swalin's 17 points in their 2-1 decision.
John J. Gidick, 98, of North Versailles, formerly of Donora, died Oct. 15 in McKeesport Hospital. Mr. Gidick was a retired teacher and basketball and baseball coach at Donora and Ringgold high schools.
Monongahela Valley Hospital is in a countdown to the Oct. 25 grand opening of its new Center for Fitness and Health at Willow Pointe, Rostraver Township. A health fair will be held from noon to 4 p.m. as part of the celebration, and Mike Clark, WTAE-TV anchor and reporter, will be a special guest.
Ron Paglia is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.
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- Past newsmakers plentiful in journey down Memory Lane