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Issue Home February 25, 2003 Site Home

Big Bucks Bingo And Pizza Party
Susky High Gets Fiaschi Scholarship
Quilt Displays At Area Parent Chat
Emergency Fuel Funds For Local LIHEAP
Former Local Has Debut Novel Out
Lenoxville Senior Center Update
Montrose Judge At Philly Flower Show
Roses From The South

Big Bucks Bingo And Pizza Party

Susquehanna County Family Community Center in New Milford, PA has been hosting "Big Bucks" bingo nights and pizza parties for the community and family literacy participants. The bingo nights are held at different times of the month and are Parent and Child Time Together (PACT) times to promote family literacy in Susquehanna County.

David Potter and Michelle Moser calling bingo numbers at big bucks bingo night and pizza party.

Participants enjoy pizza, playing bingo and sharing time with their family and other families. Win at bingo and you receive a yellow bingo bucks slip that can be accumulated to turn in for prizes at the end of the evening. Prizes range from books, stickers and toys for younger children to books, games and school supplies for older children.

The next event will be a St. Patrick's "Big Bucks" bingo night and pizza party on March 12, 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Susquehanna County Community Center, Joines Building, Junction Rtes. 11 and 706 in New Milford. For more information and to let them know you are attending, call 465-2880 or 278-9027.

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Susky High Gets Fiaschi Scholarship

The late Col. Peter J. Fiaschi, US Army (Ret.), never attended Susquehanna Community High School, but the school is sharing in his generosity since a scholarship has been established in memory of his parents, the late Mariano and Maria (Lampazzi) Fiaschi.

Pictured are Maria and Mariano Fiaschi.

Colonel Fiaschi was born and raised in Susquehanna and graduated from Laurel Hill Academy in 1953. He received his Registered Nurse Degree from the School of Nursing Medical Center, Jersey City Hospital and his Master of Science of Nursing Degree from the Catholic University of America, Washington, DC. Peter died in Washington, DC, September 19, 2000, at 64 years of age.

A donation of $130,000, in the name of Mariano and Maria (Lampazzi) Fiaschi Nursing Scholarship Fund, will be available to students who pass math and verbal exams, who are accepted in an accredited nursing program, who possess a sincere desire to pursue high quality university studies, and who have the potential to contribute in a meaningful way to the health and welfare of the community.

Peter served in the Army Nurse Corps from March 7, 1961, until his retirement on March 31, 1987. During that time he served as a medical-surgical nurse, operating room nurse, instructor and nurse administrator at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC, Fort Belvoir, Virginia and Fitzsimmons Army Hospital, Denver, Colorado, to mention a few. He was the Assistant Chief of Nurses at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, Washington, DC and retired as the Chief of Nurses at William Beaumont Army Medical Center in El Paso, Texas. Peter attained the rank of Colonel and received many medals and commendations over the years that included: National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal and the Vietnam Campaign Medal.

Peter’s parents, Mariano and Maria (Lampazzi) Fiaschi were both born in Italy. Mariano was born in Comune DiCori, February 2, 1894. Maria was born April 5, 1909 in Guliano Di Roma. Mr. Fiaschi came to the United States in 1912 and became a US citizen in 1936. He was employed by the Erie Railroad and PENNDOT. Later, with his wife, they became the owners of the Hotel Lorraine, which they operated from 1923 to 1971. He died August 13, 1983.

Mrs. Fiaschi came to the United States in 1912, at three years of age, settling in Sayre, PA, with her parents. She attended Sayre High School, where she was an honor student. She became a citizen of the United States on June 27, 1937. Maria and Mariano were married on July 6, 1929 in the Church of the Epiphany, Sayre, PA, making their home in Susquehanna after the wedding. She died August 28, 1989.

While owning the Hotel Lorraine, the Fiaschis were very active in community affairs and often sponsored many civic programs. They sponsored several sports groups, which included the Tri-Boro Baseball Town team, bowling teams, both men and women, softball teams from the 1930’s on.

Although Mrs. Fiaschi had a high school education, Mr. Fiaschi was a self-taught, ambitious businessman with both he and his wife operating the Hotel Lorraine, which consisted of 12 rooms, a bar, a kitchen and dining room. On Saturday nights, the dining room of the hotel became a gathering place for the "young ‘uns," either listening to the jukebox or on several occasions a three-piece band.

The Fiaschis were well known and highly respected citizens of the community. They were equally interested in the youth of the community, as well as the adult population. On several occasions, they would "foot the bill" for children to see a movie in the local theater.

In addition, they were generous in so many other ways. I recall (personally) while talking to Mr. Fiaschi, that a tenant approached him and in a low voice said, "Mr. Fiaschi, I don’t have enough money to pay the rent this month." In his broken English, Mr. Fiaschi replied, "No make worry, when you get money, you pay me."

More often than not, you would see Mrs. Fiaschi helping tenants with their bills, taxes, but mostly medical needs. Most of all, a few of the tenants could not read or write and would depend on Mrs. Fiaschi for help.

A quote by Mr. Fiaschi follows that I liked and never forgot, used when a "friendly argument" would take place: "Hey, boys, 100 years from now you no know the difference."

The Fiaschis had two sons, Joseph Fiaschi, of Binghamton and the late Col. Peter Fiaschi; three grandchildren, Julie Moore and David Fiaschi of New Jersey and Maria Fiaschi Huddleston of Kentucky; six great-grandchildren, Brittany Kay Huddleston, 13 and Rachel Leana Huddleston, 3; Ashley Moore, 16 and Ericka Moore, 14; Michelle and Katy Fiaschi.

It is without a doubt a super achievement, that a son of two immigrants from Italy could educate himself to the point that he became a "super male nurse" in the United States Army, that he attained the rank of colonel and eventually was in a position to establish a scholarship in honor of his parents – two immigrants from Italy. And yes, the two immigrants from Italy made it possible through their efforts and hard wok, to allow their son, Peter to attain a high stature in the United States Army, that led to a scholarship being named in their honor, "The Mariano and Maria Lampazzi Fiaschi Nursing Scholarship" at the Susquehanna Community School.

Knowing the Fiaschi family since I was a teenager and very often in need of "help," I would bring my "troubles" to Mrs. (Maria) Fiaschi, who would ease my mind, until the next time.

I can also truthfully say, if the Fiaschis were alive today, they would want to let the world know of their son, Peter’s generosity to Susquehanna Community High School.

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Quilt Displays At Area Parent Chat

At the "Parent Chat" held at the Susquehanna Family Community Center in New Milford, PA, Susan Jennings displayed many of the quilts that she has made over the years for family and friends. She demonstrated the craft of quilt making and provided the parents with thread, needles and material for parent group to try their hand at quilting. With her help and expert advice many were able to piece together enough squares to make a small wall hanging or pillow to take home with them.

Susan Jennings of New Milford displays one of the many quilts she has made.

During the quilting, parents discussed tips and suggestions on parenting and learned about programs offered through the Susquehanna Family Literacy Program at the Susquehanna Family Community Centers in New Milford and South Montrose.

For more information on the programs, contact Susquehanna County Literacy, 465-2880 or 278-9027.

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Emergency Fuel Funds For Local LIHEAP

Harrisburg – Governor Rendell’s Acting Public Welfare Secretary, Estelle B. Richman, announced that Pennsylvania will use its share of recently released federal emergency funds to increase the crisis-grant payment for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

"The maximum crisis award has been increased from $300 to $600 to help families hit with home-heating emergencies due to the colder than normal temperatures and higher heating costs," Richman said. "Families who have already received a crisis grant and who are still experiencing problems can receive more assistance, for a combined total of $600."

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services recently gave states an additional $200 million in federal emergency aid in response to the higher energy costs this winter, especially for home-heating oil. Pennsylvania received $16.4 million, which was based on the Commonwealth’s low-income population and the number of households that use fuel oil to heat their homes.

Applications for LIHEAP are available at DPW County Assistance Offices, local utility companies and community service agencies, such as Area Agencies on Aging or Community Action Agencies.

For more information, contact the Susquehanna County Assistance office at 278–3891.

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Former Local Has Debut Novel Out

Binghamton, NY - What happens when a chain letter is sent out? Harmless fun comes of it and nothing more, right? Not in Jane Marie Teel Rossen’s newly released novel. Jane Marie’s book, The Chain Letter (now available through 1st Books Library), follows the life of a young girl named Marty through her last year in high school and the beginning days of college.

Set in the 1950’s, the book begins as Marty and five friends receive chain letters during their senior year of high school. The chain letter includes a poem and a threat, reading, "If you do not send what is written in this letter to six other people, your own life will come to an end." The girls brush off the letter as a hoax and go off to college.

Marty majors in Chemistry, but her dream is to become an author. Without enough money to live on, Marty must work and cannot devote time to her writing, until her father’s unfortunate death from an aneurysm. In life, Marty’s father was a car mechanic, always struggling to make ends meet for the family. In death, he leaves his last gift. Due to her father’s wise investment many years before, Marty now has the money to pursue her dreams.

In addition to her dream, Marty soon realizes a nightmare, as misfortune and tragedy begin to befall the five other chain letter recipients. It soon becomes clear that she must finish her book before she can be free. Caught in a web of murder, Marty must find out who sent the chain letter before it’s too late and her number is up.

Born and raised in Nicholson, PA, Jane Marie spent her summers growing up at a quiet lakeside cottage, with a Nancy Drew novel in hand. Writing is now her passion. She has lived in Newport Beach, CA, and currently lives in Binghamton, NY.

The Chain Letter is her debut novel.

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Lenoxville Senior Center Update

At last, the weather seems to be cooperating on Thursdays. Last week we were able to hold our annual elections. Officers for 2003 are: President - Edna Lopotofsky; Vice President - Mary Allen; Secretary - Mac Rosencrans; Assistant Secretary - Mary Steponaitis; Treasurer - Arlene Zablotsky; Assistant Treasurer - Carolyn Taylor.

We have added a new member, Dorothy Gates, to our council roster and welcomed other new members - Marion McConnell and Lois Griffiths. As is our habit, we serenaded this month’s birthday members, Mildred Krisauskus, Rose Kakuk, and Angelo Carpenetti. Another pleasure was welcoming back Edgar Thomas, after his long illness. We do miss Anne Mensell, who now lives in the Forest City Personal Care Facility and Ed Robinson, who is at the Residential Care in Susquehanna.

On this beautiful sunny day, February 13, Adam Konopka installed our newly elected officers before dinner and we honored St. Valentine with heart and flower decorations, and candy. We also enjoyed a sing-along of romantic "Oldies," accompanied on the piano by Alice Everitt.

We were happy to have Ruth Kennedy and Charles Turner with us again to enjoy our festivities and join in Adam Konopka’s Peppi exercise class. Next week, weather permitting, we will have a blood pressure check.

Words of Wisdom: "He has achieved success who has lived long and laughed often and loved much - who has won the trust of good women, the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children - who has left the world better than he found it whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem or a rescued soul - who has always looked for the best in others, always given the best he had - who has filled his niche and accomplished his goal - whose life has been an inspiration, whose memory a benediction."

‘Till next time - keep warm and God bless!

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Montrose Judge At Philly Flower Show

Flower exhibitions and shows have deep roots in the United States, dating back to at least 1829, when members of the fledgling Pennsylvania Horticultural Society met to show off their plant treasures from around the world. From that modest beginning sprang the Philadelphia Flower Show, now the largest indoor flower show in the world. By comparison, England’s renowned Chelsea Flower Show dates back only to 1913.

The Pennsylvania Convention Center houses the 10-acre Philadelphia Flower Show, which now attracts some 300,000 visitors each year. It offers a blend of the standard elements that attendees look forward to seeing each year. Creative landscape exhibits, displays of the latest plants and gardening products, floral competitions, and educational offerings provide something for everyone – from rank beginner to seasoned gardener. Festival de las Flores, the theme of this year’s show will pay special tribute to the significant Latin community in the Philadelphia area.

Montrose resident Gladys Bennett has been invited to judge at the prestigious Philadelphia Flower Show this year. She will join judges from California, Washington, Texas, Louisiana and many others states. Gladys is a member of The Garden Club of Montrose and is accredited by the Garden Club Federation of Pennsylvania and National Garden Clubs, Inc.

If you’ve never experienced the Philadelphia Flower Show, make this the year to do it. Local bus trips make it easy to enjoy the show and return with visions of possibilities.

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Roses From The South

Shortly after 0700 hours on November 8, 1941, the naval battle for North Africa began. By that afternoon, 7750 officers and men were ashore. After establishing a beachhead, Gen. George Patton drew up plans for an all-out assault on Casablanca.

Company A was attempting to storm a ridge about two hundred feet high leading into the city. One of every three men in the line had fallen.

"Attention!" Captain Wilson’s booming voice sounded above the continuous rifle and artillery fire. "We’re going up men–and this time we’re staying. Charge with bayonets–forward."

Lt. James Robinson shifted his rifle into his left hand and unholstered his .45 Colt pistol. As Captain Wilson went over a small sand dune, he suddenly fell–hit by an enemy bullet. Lt. Robinson–who had just celebrated his twentieth birthday, was now in charge.

His fiancé, Janie would be proud when he wrote her about this. "Come on, move off the line," he shouted. "At the double–forward."

What was left of A Company advanced halfway up the sand dune. The whine of bullets sounded like an angry nest of bees as they hit the sand or tore into a piece of flesh.

Suddenly a face stood out from behind a boulder, twenty-five or thirty yards in front of Robinson. It was a dirty bearded face that even looked unfriendly. The voice spoke something Robinson did not understand, and then he squeezed the trigger.

Robinson felt the blow of the bullet on his chest. It was like a hard hit from someone’s fist. It didn’t hurt as much as he supposed it would. It made his arm feel useless because he had dropped his rifle.

"Take this from Uncle Sam!" Robinson said as he quickly aimed his .45 and fired.

Something troubled him. His left side hurt and his mouth was filled with something salty and sticky. It was funny how the past came rushing in. He could hear the sound of a bugle. Had they swept the krauts from the ridge?

It was no bugle, it was an orchestra, and they were playing Roses From The South, a Strauss waltz.

Atlanta was in a relaxed mood at six thirty in the evening. The fall weather was cool, and Peachtree St. was lined with cars and taxis as people made their way home. The Park Hotel was all lit up as soldiers from nearby Ft. Benning and their dates relaxed, drank and danced in the main ballroom.

The crystal chandelier gleamed like sparkling diamonds as the orchestra struck up music for the service men to dance by. James Robinson felt his hand tremble as Janie laid her hand in his.

"You’re very beautiful tonight," he whispered as he bent towards her.

Janie urged him to resign from the Army, to quit the conflict that would surely take him away from her. She was also worried her father might force her to return his ring and marry Reginald Morris, the young banker.

They waltzed the night away. Soon, the band struck up Roses From The South. This was to be their last dance together before he was shipped out. "I’ll be back to claim another dance. Say you’ll wait for me."

"Always and forever, I’ll wait, dearest," she said.

Dr. Reynolds splashed the soap from his hands and wiped them on a fresh green towel. "Dammit, I can’t understand young Robinson. He should have died two weeks ago with his left lung almost shot out."

Lt. Robinson looked up hopefully as the young woman strode towards him. "Any mail, nurse?"

The nurse smiled, and said, "Here’s your mail. Shall I read it to you?"

"Yes, please."

James my beloved, they tell me you have been wounded. Whatever hurts you also hurts me. They say the war will be over soon and I know I will again see my own true love, for whose return I am waiting. How happy we shall be together.

Good night my dearest, and know that every night I pray for your return.

Always and forever, yours, Janie.

Several hundred guests passed through the reception line, each showering the bride and groom with presents and good wishes. After the last champagne toast, the company retired to the main ballroom where the orchestra was playing.

It had been one of those hot scorching southern summer days. Suddenly a thunderstorm developed with wind and lightning.

"Shall we dance, my dear?" asked Reginald Morris. The orchestra struck up Roses From The South and in a moment they were whirling around the dance floor.

Suddenly the storm unleashed all its fury, causing the lights to flicker and go out. "Excuse me dear," said Morris. "I’ll see that things get back in order."

The orchestra continued to play. Soon, a man in uniform approached.

"This is my waltz."

The couple danced as he held her oh so tightly. She could feel the double row of buttons on his uniform, but she had not seen any soldier during the reception. This man–did she know him?

She dropped her bouquet. Her heart was pumping wildly and her knees felt weak, but the strong arms held her up.

"This is my waltz, ma’am."

"Yes, this is your waltz and all others. I will never dance another waltz with anyone else."

Soon the lights were on full-force again and the room was ablaze with the sparkling of the chandelier. The orchestra stopped, but the couple in the middle of the dance floor continued to swirl.

"Janie, stop it," shouted her husband, Reginald Norris. "Control yourself."

She looked at him with strange empty eyes. She was humming an accompaniment to the dance.

"He came back to me; from the grave, just like he had promised to claim the waltz I’d promised him."

One week later, Janie was sent to Bryce Hospital in Tuscaloosa, Alabama for the mentally insane. She remained there until her death in 1966.

This article is based on a true story.

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