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Many laboring over Yesteryear memories as holiday approaches

| Thursday, Aug. 28, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

Labor Day, which marks the unofficial end of summer, is just around the corner.

Many people will begin long weekend activities tomorrow and celebrate the holiday in a variety of ways.

With those thoughts in mind – and hoping summer weather will continue long after the holiday festivities – let's take a look at activities that took place during the Labor Day daze of Yesteryear:

70 years ago

Monday, Aug. 28, 1944

United Press International reported that Allied bombers assaulted 10 major Japanese bases in the Pacific in a three-day series of raids and the Japanese radio announced that Allied destroyers had bombarded Wojte Island in the Marshals yesterday morning.

Michael Baker of Charleroi, former Waynesburg College football star and protégé of popular coach Frank Wolfe, has been hired by the North Belle Vernon School Board to coach football for the Jackrabbits this season. Although Baker is an accredited teacher, he has been hired as a non-teaching coach. He holds a defense job in the laboratory at the Pittsburgh Steel plant in Allenport.

60 years ago

Saturday, Aug. 28, 1954

Speeders in Washington Township are finding the going not so good these days. Numerous arrests have been made by police Chief John Stump, who is keeping a 24-hour patrol in an effort to keep speeding at a minimum. He said traffic signs are being “flagrantly disregarded” by drivers of cars and motorcycles along Perry Avenue. Violations of the speed laws “will not be tolerated,” Stump stated.

Mary's Spaghetti Village on Wickerham-Donora Road (next to the Sampson School) is offering these weekend specials: Oyster sandwiches, delicious shrimp or chicken dinners (generous portions), spaghetti with our popular sauce. “Bring the wife and the kiddies. They'll enjoy a meal away from home.”

Jake Martin hurled a no-hitter, missing a perfect game by the narrow margin of two hit batsmen, as Van Voorhis won the first game of the Mon Valley League championship series against Monessen CIO, 2-0. Martin struck out 14, did not walk a batter and also drove in his team's runs with a double in the fourth inning.

50 years ago

Friday, Aug. 28, 1964

Gus Costas of Donora was elected chairman of the Mon Valley Sewage Authority. He succeeds George Kessler of Monessen, who served as chairman since the authority was formed more than a year ago. Attorney Charles Skomski of Monessen was re-elected secretary-treasurer.

Nine lettermen form the nucleus of Coach Bap Manzini's Bellmar High School football team. The veteran Hurricanes are Chuck Jenkins, Curt McCarthy, Pete Duda, Norm Luce, Jim Bair, Gary Cramer, Frank Mascara, Dave Pierallini and Harry Muckle.

The Mon Valley's newest booster organization, the Donora Dragon Club, will stage a kickoff dinner Sept. 17 at the Donora Elks. Attorney Paul Petro, one of the founders and temporary chairman, said the purpose of the club is “to promote athletics in particular and the community of Donora in general.” Others credited with organizing the club are Thomas Hauck, Dr. Michael Herk, Al Ersham, John Kosh, Edward M. Gray, Dr. Dimitri Petro, James K. Russell, Alfred Zeffiro, Frank Penn, Gust Scandary, Bob Pollack, Wendell Ramey and Dr. W.W. Hahn.

39 years ago

Thursday, Aug. 28, 1975

Monessen teachers have accepted a new contract. Mrs. Robert Farr, president of the Monessen Education Association, said the group overwhelmingly ratified the school's latest offer at a meeting last night. The board is expected to approve the new pact tonight.

The Charleroi Area School Board hired Gus Brickner Jr. to coach the boys' and girls' varsity swimming teams at high school.

The weekend special at Carol's Twin Twist on Route 88 in Speers (next to Hoagie King) entices customers to buy one sundae and get a second one at half-price.

30 years ago

Tuesday, Aug. 28, 1984

Grand opening festivities were held at Maria Russo's Pizzeria and Restaurant, 527 McKean Ave., Donora. The new eatery features “Italian cuisine from authentic family recipes.”

Monessen Youth Education Association members presented teachers with flowers to welcome them back for the new school year. MYEA leaders taking part in the project were Angel Vatakis, Beverly Ulens, Carmela Martucci, John Chicolis, Kim Kurlyo, Polly Ostetrico and Eric Phillippi.

20 years ago

Monday, Aug. 29, 1994

(Aug. 28 was a Sunday)

Jennifer Ann Watkins, 18, of Monongahela, was crowned as Miss Mid Mon Valley 1994 in the annual pageant at City Park in Monessen. First runnerup was Heather Hogan of Charleroi.

In a separate Mid Mon Valley Children and Teen Pageant, the following were chosen for top honors: Patrick Claybaugh, 2, of Belle Vernon, Baby Mister; Angelina Rendina, 3, of Perryopolis, Baby Miss; Kristin Basista, 5, of West Newton, Mini Miss; Karissa Sadler, 8, of New Eagle, Little Miss; Andrea Fragello 12, of Donora, Miss Pre-Teen; Lucinda Vincenti, Clover Hill, 14, of Miss Mon Valley Teen.

Rege Satina repeated as men's golf champion at Monongahela Valley Country Club with a 226 score in the 54-hole medal play tournament. Chad Cole was runnerup at 232.

At Nemacolin Country Club, Jeff Petrucci captured the men's title with rounds of 78-74-77-73 in the 72-hole championship event. Dick Kluck finished second.

10 years ago

Saturday, Aug. 28, 2004

Area high shool football fans rejoiced as another season began last night with these results: Monessen 28, Charleroi Area 14; Thomas Jefferson 28, Belle Vernon Area 0; Moon 29, Ringgold 6; Yough 41, Southmoreland 8; California Area 14, Riverview 6; Mapletown 21, Bentworth 13, and Elizabeth Forward 19, Mount Pleasant 14.

Among the top individual performances were:

Monessen – Evert “Mick” Williams, 145 yards rushing on 10 carries, two touchdowns and a 57-yard TD pass to Quinton Martin; Martin, two touchdowns; Matt Stark kicked two extra points and Matt Yartin added the other points-after on a run.

Charleroi Area – Jermaine Thurston, two touchdowns, 14 carries for 124 yards; Travis Karlowsky, touchdown; Adam Mudrick, two extra points on kicks.

Yough – Craig Sudenov, three touchdowns, 19 carries for 140 yards; Marco Bassara, two field goals; Nate Ozorosko, touchdown pass from Tommy McIntyre.

California Area – Matt Hyita, two touchdowns; Ian Glima, two extra points on kicks.

(If you have memories to share or a story idea, contact Ron Paglia at or c/o The Valley Independent, Eastgate 19, Monessen, PA 15062.)

Ron Paglia is a freelance writer for Trib Total Media.

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