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Frascatore retiring after four decades with water authority

| Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014, 12:01 a.m.
Jim Ference | The Valley Independent
Frank Frasctore of Charleroi will retire on Friday, Feb. 7, 2014, after spending 42 years with the Authority of the Borough of Charleroi. He is shown on the job Monday, Feb. 3, 2014.

Frank Frascatore spent more than four decades ensuring quality water service to Valley communities, a service that admittedly interrupted more than one family function.

But it was on one call that the Charleroi man had to work fast to fix before rushing his wife Cynthia to the hospital for the birth of their son.

“I was on call when my wife was pregnant with our son,” Frascatore said. “I went to repair a water line leak and she went into labor. I got home and rushed her to Magee Womens Hospital.”

Frascatore, 65, will spend his last day on the job for the Authority of the Borough of Charleroi on Friday, retiring after 42 years of service.

Frascatore grew up in Donora, attending St. Charles School until fifth grade. After living in Fallowfield Township for a couple of years, he attended Charleroi Area High School, graduating in 1967.

Frascatore earned a certificate from the Institute of Computer Management. He was looking for a job when he was drafted into the U.S. Army in February 1969.

“I couldn't find a job because I was 1-A,” Frascatore said. “I was draft material.”

A military policeman, he spent two years at Fort Leavenworth, Kan.

After being discharged from the Army, Frascatore worked at the Allenport Plant of Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel briefly before being hired at the municipal Authority of the Borough of Charleroi.

Hired as a utility man, he was promoted to foreman in 1980 and distribution supervisor in 1991. He has served as director of operations since 2010.

“I learned as I went along,” Frascatore said. “I didn't like working in the mill. I liked working outdoors and working in all three towns – Charleroi, Monessen and Donora.”

The authority provides water service to customers in Charleroi, Monessen and Donora.

Frascatore most recently supervised three foreman, one in each of the authority's service communities. The authority's office in Charleroi was built in 1997.

Frascatore admits he worked a lot of cold nights over the years, and holidays.

“No one knows when a line is going to break,” Frascatore said.

Frascatore recalled one Christmas Eve in the mid-1990s when a pipe broke in the water plant in Charleroi.

“The town was almost without water,” Frascatore said. “Our crews worked around the clock. We had it well orchestrated.”

Even during a recent water line break in Monessen, Frascatore went to the scene, saying it's important “just to go out and show the crews you care.”

“When you work 42 years in the same job, you get to love it,” Frascatore said. “I don't think I would want to do anything else.”

“I love the Valley. And they gave me an opportunity to stay here, raise a family here, stay connected to some of the people I went to school with.”

Frascatore has also served the community. A member of the police commission in Charleroi in the 1980s, he served 10 years on borough council a decade later.

“I learned being on council that it's not easy,” Frascatore said. “It takes more than one person to get things accomplished. I met a lot of people who cared.”

He also served as first vice president of the Mon Valley Regional Chamber of Commerce and was a member of the J.K. Tener Library Board.

Asked what he will do in retirement, Frascatore said “whatever my wife wants.”

Frascatore and his wife have been married since 1978. Their daughter and son-in-law, Marissa and Nick Bongiorno as well as granddaughter, Mia, reside in Monessen. Their son, Frank Frascatore Jr., lives in Los Angeles.

Chris Buckley is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-684-2642 or