In a recent Peeking into the Past we noted that in 1963, the Glider Inn, Browntown, won the National Division pennant in the Greater Pittston Slow-Pitch Softball League. The team had yet to compete in a three-game playoff with the American Division to determine the league honors. We asked if anyone knew the outcome of the championship game. Francine Pisano of Jenkins Township, daughter of team catcher Frank Pisano, who lives in Wyoming, called to let us know that the Glider team lost to Cas’s Cafe in the championship game that year. Her father enjoyed playing with the team for two years. Along with Pisano, members of the team were Billy Luke, Angelo Dellario, William Watson, Joe Yarina, Tom Shannon, Joe Ruane, John Connors, Marty Connors, Joe DeMark, Terry McGinty, Joe Dietrick, Yippy Shandra, Marty Micklas, Ed Cawley, Rocky Policare and Ed Haggerty.
1949 – 67 Years Ago
The Dupont Lions decided to run a contest that was based on the exact time the battery on the “big clock” near the Lincoln Theatre would run out. Thousands of tickets were sold. The prize was an all-expenses-paid trip for two to Canada. Lions Club organizers did not want to leave the contest-ending day to chance, as they wanted the winner to be announced at their upcoming annual picnic the following day. A practice determined a clock battery lasted six days. A battery was connected to the clock, run for three days, disconnected and then four days before the picnic, the battery was re-connected to the clock. On the expected stop day, ticket holders and organizers watched as the clock continued to tick with no signs of slowing. Through the night the clock ticked on. The picnic day came and went, and still the clock registered the correct time. Hours turned into days. Bets were waged as to how many days would pass before a winner could be announced. The battery finally stopped 10 days after the proposed date and it was announced that Billy Golla Jr., of Dupont, picked the winning hour. The only problem was, Golla’s parents paid for and departed on a planned tour of Canada just the day before. They could have enjoyed the trip free of charge.
1959 – 57 Years Ago
A stock company plan was announced that would provide funds needed to salvage the coal industry in Greater Pittston and to do everything possible to retrieve the bodies of the 12 men entombed in the Knox Mine. Specifics of the Mine Revival Plan included the formation of a corporation to lease coal holdings from The Pennsylvania Coal Company and Lehigh Valley Industries. The proposed corporation would issue 50,000 shares of stock at $30 per share. The state would finance the pumping of the mines and both Pennsylvania Coal and Lehigh Valley would forfeit all royalties for a period of nine months. Former employees of both companies would be rehired. Officers of the corporation would be H.J. Connelly, John C. Kehoe, Joseph Martin, H.W. Bradbury and Harold B. Wickey. After the announcement, there was no determination as to future plans or meetings of the stock company.
Jesse Lipfert, of Exeter, took 11 first, 13 second and nine third place prizes along with four honorable mentions during the Wyoming Valley Flower Club flower show. First time participant, Henry Knowles of West Pittston, was awarded three first place prizes and a merit award. It was the first time in the show’s 26-year history that a first-time entrant won a first-place prize.
1969 – 47 Years Ago
Radioman Third Class Robert F. Richards of West Pittston received the United States Seventh Fleet Commendation for his service in Vietnam. Richards served with Comphibron 9 Amphibious Squadron on the Helicopter Assault Carrier USS Tripoli. The commendation read, “For outstanding performance of duty between August 1968 and February 1969 during combat operations against the enemy. Petty Officer Richards initiative and professionalism contributed significantly and directly to the successful accomplishment of the ship’s mission and to the United states effort in Vietnam.”
Top 10 songs of 1969
1. “Laughing,” by Guess Who
2. “A Boy Named Sue,” by Johnny Cash
3. “Give Peace a Chance,” by Plastic Ono Band
4. “Put a Little Love in Your Heart,” by Jackie DeShannon
5. “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again,” by Tom Jones
6. “Polk Salad Annie,” by Tony Joe White
7. “Lay Lady Lay,” by Bob Dillon
8. “It’s Getting Better,” by Mama Cass
9. “Marrakesh Express,” by Crosby, Stills and Nash
10. “True Grit,” by Glen Campbell
1979 – 37 Years Ago
Buddy Poppy Awards were presented by the V.F.W. Post 396, Wyoming. The ladies awards were presented to Judy Marsh, Viola Zigmund and Lois Bond. The Buddy Poppy tie pin was awarded to James Morio. A plaque was awarded to Henry Antos. According to vfw.org, the Buddy Poppy, assembled by disabled veterans, is the group’s official memorial flower and represents the blood shed by American service men and women. The distribution of the flower was established in 1922. The Buddy Poppy Distribution Year will end on April 30, 2017.
1989 – 27 Years Ago
Toni Valenti, Mary Lepore, Donna Salerno, June Mitchell, Tina Salerno, Theresa Lepore, Eleanor Kashuda, Clementine Salerno, Nancy Recuperio, Louise Messina, Linda Ciampi, Karen Nocera, Elizabeth Vitale, Mary Manganello and Nancy Ann Dunston, members of the the ladies auxiliary of the Goodwill Hose Company of West Pittston, planned to hast a games party at the fire hall.
This Day in History
1963 – One of the largest demonstrations in the history of the United States, the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, takes place and reaches its climax at the base of the Lincoln Memorial when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivers his “I have a dream” speech.
1968 – Clash between police and anti-war demonstrators occurs during Democratic Party’s National Convention in Chicago.
1981 – John Hinckley Jr. pleads innocent to attempted assination of President Ronald Reagan.
2005 – Hurricane Katrina reaches Category 5 strength; Louisiana Superdome opened as a “refuge of last resort” in New Orleans, La.
Reach Judy Minsavage at 570-991-6403 or on Twitter @JudithMinsavage