Voices From Duquesne – July 4th Edition

WOW! I have gotten so many responses from all of pur friends updating us on their wereabouts! I decided to let you enjoy the responses I’ve gotten just in the last couple of days.

I also wanted to wish everyone a Happy 4th of July too! You know how all of those people close to you from Duquesne celebrated their love for our country. Patriotism was a way of live in Duquesne. So celebrate the day, not only in honor of our country, but in honor of all of those Duquesne citizens who are no longer with us but who loved the good ol’ USA!

To give you a bit more to enjoy, I have included the front page article from The Duquesne Times as well as the photos from 60 years ago, July 12, 1951. The city was ending a week long HOMECOMING CELEBRATION.  The pictures are a bit dark, but the memories they provoke are as bright as July 4th fireworks.

Lastly, don’t forget to let us know where you are! Just click the following ling and fill out the form and allow you friends to catch up with you! We look forward to hearing for each and every one of you! #1 CLICK HERE TO LET ME KNOW WHO YOU ARE, WHO YOU WERE, AND WHERE YOU ARE LIVING!!

Now, on to our latest roll call:

♥Married Name= Vickie Little | makingmagic1958@yahoo.com

Maiden Name = Vickie Brady

Years in Duquesne = 1964-1984

Where do you live now? = White, PA

comments = I really enjoy reading about the good memories in Duquesne I too have many good memories growing up in Duquesne. Living away from the area I enjoy getting on here and seeing if anyone I grew up with is on here but i dearly love reading what people have to say that did grow up and graduate from the area Keep up the good work on this site.

♥Married Name? = Linda Gibb

Maiden Name = Linda Negley

Years in Duquesne = 1943-1951, then moved to West Mifflin

Where do you live now? = The Villages, FL

comments = My cousin Claire found your site while hunting up Father Dennis on the web. She emailed it to me & I’ve sent it on to all my family & friends that I’ve got Email addresses for.

I love reading about everyone’s memories of Duquesne, West Mifflin, Kennywood, etc.

My mother now lives in the bldg. where I went to kindergarten. I graduated in 61 from DHS.

♥What is your name? = BLAIR A BUDDAY | bbudday@hotmail.com

Years in Duquesne = 1943 to 1958

Where do you live now? = SOUTH GOLF COVE, PT. CHARLOTTE, FL 33981

comments = Graduated DHS class of 61, worked in ISALY’S on Grant Ave, joined the Air Force, and seen quite a few countries, Retired in 83 after 21 years. Moved to NH and worked for the US Postal Service for 20 yrs. Retired, for the second time, then decided to move on. Packed our bags, left 2 boys and 2 grandchildren in NH and came to the West Coast of Florida where it is nice and warm. No more snow. Have been married for 44 yrs. to Marcia and couldn’t be more content. love reading the Duquesne Blog as I spent most of my early years living on 1st Street. Many good times were had in those days especially in Plum Alley. Keep up the good work and I do pass this site on to others from around the area of Duquesne.

♥What is your married name? = Suzanne Filotei | Suzanne6@optonline.net

Maiden name = Suzanne Danko

Years in Duquesne = 1947 – 1970

Where do you live now? = Black Rock, Ct.

comments = It’s really great to receive this blog and remembering times past. I remember spending summertime at Polish Hill doing arts and crafts. Watching my friend ride her bike down the double dip, falling off and having compound fractures as a result, we never did that again. Went to the movies (down street) as my Mom called it, on a Sat. afternoon and taking our lunch with us. Then going over to the 5 & 10 shopping with the extra change we had. Swimming at the Library and having a picnic outside on the cement squares. Hanging out with high school friends around Kennedy Ave., and having to make my 10PM curfew – making it back to Ross St. by the skin of my teeth. Taking dancing lessons at Pat’s Dance Studio in Duquesne Place. Walking to Kennywood Park, going swimming all day and then walking back home.

Eating perogies at a church by the high school during lent on Fridays, they were great.

It was all good fun!

Thank you for starting this blog I really enjoy it.

♥What is your married name? = Debbie Stewart | debbie@christthelightoftheworld.org

Maiden name = Abbatangelo

Years in Duquesne = 1952-1976

Where do you live now? = Elizabeth Twp., PA

comments = Jim, Thanks for bringing back so many great memories of growing up in Duquesne. Your blog has reached so many people and has touched so many with your vivid memories of Duquesne. I have returned to my “ roots” so to speak after many years and work in the rectory for Christ the Light of the World Parish the former Holy Name Church as the parish secretary. It is difficult to see each day how the city has declined but for those of us who went to grade school at Holy Name I am proud to say the church has survived and is thriving in many ways!!

Continue taking us down memory lane…it has been wonderful!

♥What is your name? = Ed Thomas | edthomas@thevillages.net

Years in Duquesne = 1943 to 1961

Where do you live now? = The Villages, Florida

comments = I graduated from DHS in May of 1961 when I went into the Air Force. I worked the previous summer in Kennywood at the Fish Pond. I will be returning to Duquesne this summer to attend my 50th reunion; I’m looking forward to it.

♥What is your name? = John Popp | biggpopper@sbcglobal.net

Years in Duquesne = 1939 to 1970 1970 till 1985 in West Mifflin

Where do you live now? = Antioch Ca.

comments = Duquesne Grad 1957 Great to read about People and places in Duquesne come back every year to see family and friends, keep up the good work. found blog in facebook.

♥What is your married name? = Carolyn Baney | carolynbaney@aol.com

Maiden name = Kurey

Years in Duquesne = Born and raised in McKeesport 1940-1962

Where do you live now? = Indian Harbour Beach, Fl

comments = I dated many guys from Duquesne, meeting them at Kennywood pool and at the local dances.

Steve Volk told me about this blog.

♥What is your name? = Paul Duffy | paul.duffy1@verizon.net

Years in Duquesne = 1953-1969

Where do you live now? = Falls Church, VA

comments = Holy Name (‘60) and DHS (‘65) grad. Like so many others, a veteran of Kennywood and US Steel Duquesne Works employment. Found this site through some fellow DHS grads.

♥What is your married name? = Loretta Boncek | lorettaboncek@sbcglobal.net

Maiden name = Ondike

Years in Duquesne = 1944 – 1961

Where do you live now? = Castroville, TX

comments = Information very helpful although I do not recognize any names. I was looking up my classmates from Holy Name elementary school but did not find anything. I was very disappointed by the way the city looked. I still have family living in the area and we do go visit sometimes and it breaks my heart to see how the places that I loved to visit are no longer there, especially the library. It was such a beautiful small town. My 50 year class reunion is coming in September of this year and I am looking forward to it. Hope I can recognize some classmates since I was unable to attend any of the other reunions because we were in the military and spent most of our time overseas.

♥What is your name? = David Marks | david.marks1@verizon.net

Years in Duquesne = 1958 to 1977, then 1991 to 2000, then 2004 to present!

Where do you live now? = Duquesne!!!

comments = Debbi Faust-Clancy shared this with me. Thanks Jim, for the wonderful effort.

I enjoy reading about everyone’s memories!

I too, enjoyed a marvelous childhood in Duquesne. We didn’t know the air could kill us! Once I did some traveling I vowed never to return. But return I did, with a beautiful wife from Mississippi, after having lived and worked in 29 states and Canadian provinces [oilfield trash we are!].

I’m here for a short while longer – living in the old Milsleigle house on Kennedy Avenue – to help care for my mom, Louise Karpas Marks, born in Duquesne in 1927.

I was baptized by Gabe Fackre at Grace Reformed Church, and am now a member of Payne Chapel on Priscilla. Rev. Dr. Fackre is still with us in Massachusetts.

Duquesne has seen the bottom, and now once again the sky is the limit. yoy!

♥What is your married name? = Joyann Drumm | Jedrumm@vbschools.com

Maiden name = Barker

Years in Duquesne = 1964-1980

Where do you live now? = Virginia Beach, Virginia

comments = I love this blog…it brings back memories of the Duquesne I knew and grew up in. I love seeing pictures of how I remember my childhood hometown and all the good that once emanated from this city.

♥What is your name? = Guy Achtzehn

Years in Duquesne = 1964 to 1989

Where_do_you_live_now? = York, PA

comments = Anything Duquesne is OK with me! A “True Duke” from the get go. Grew up above Gwon’s Laundry and moved to Catherine St when I was in 2nd grade. Friends thought we became “rich” because we had a brick house…..My Father, Mel owned Achtzehn Auto Supply, served as a school board member, then later as city council and Mayor. Never did anything for personal gain….some didn’t like that but he loved the city, as we grew up to do.

My Mother, Norma, helped in the schools with reading and serving on PTO’s….again, because it was a way to give back to Duquesne. That’s what we learned and what made the city great!

Grew up wanting to play football for the Dukes! Did that and for those who played, you would understand the pride. Moved away after getting married to York, PA. Duquesne may not be a place I want to raise my family now, but there was no better place back in the day…..THATS why this blog is so good….so important…so right. Oh…and my daughter starts college this coming Sept. She had her pick of schools…and her choice? Pitt! Close to family……Need I say more? The spirit of Duquesne lives in us all….

Note to Guy Achtzehn – Guy, my dad, Steve Volk, did a great deal of business with your dad from his service station across from Holy Name Rectory on 1st Street.

♥What is your name? = Ed Kozarian Jr | kozarianjr@yahoo.com

Years in Duquesne = 1953-1997

Where do you live now? = York,pa

comments = I have great memories of growing up on 5th street and the 6th St playground. Attended Libengood? Elem. Played little league baseball up polish hill. Just great memories. Interested in the History of Duquesne. Daughter is a member of We are Duquesne where your Blog is.

♥What is your married name? = Mary Michaels | Champeau1@comcast.net

Maiden name = Barr

Years in Duquesne = 1941 to 1993

Where do you live now? = Elizabeth Twp., PA

comments = I enjoy hearing about the good old days in Duquesne. It was a great place to grow up in the 40’s and 50’s and also into the 70’s when I raised my son there. I, my sister Roseann and brothers Tony and David, all went to Crawford School, Junior High and the Senior High. My husband, Ron, was a police officer in Duquesne and served as Chief before his retirement and our escape to the hills of Elizabeth Twp.

♥What is your name? = Larry Schafer |

Years in Duquesne = 1952-1975

Where do you live now? = Flower Mound, Texas

comments = Fantastic memory maker-from Kennywood to the neighborhood stores-the living history that we were all part of and continues to live in our hearts. My brothers & sisters live in West Mifflin and when I visit I always have my drive thru memory lane of Duquesne-the hangouts, baseball fields, stores, and great food. Miss those great fish sandwich at G&M, pizza from Irene’s and hanging out at Butler’s Drug store.

I read the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette regarding the decline of the neighborhoods and DHS. It is heartbreaking that the hard work and sacrifices that the many of our family & friends endured has ended in the loss of a great community called HOME to us all.

The following link will give all of us hope for the future of Duquesne http://r.b5z.net/i/u/10061424/i/Duquesne_Report.pdf

 Duquesne completed one of its most successful homecoming week celebrations Saturday night and hearty congratulations are in order for General Chairman Harry A. Meighan and his entire committee. The new Studebaker Champion was driven away by Mr. and Mrs. George Perrick of 107 Overland Avenue.

One of the many outstanding booths this year was a photography booth sponsored by The Duqnesne Times in which Bernard Kroeger photographed more than 4,000 local people. Beautiful photographs are being distributed free of charge starting today to all those people who walked through the booth.

The parade, arranged by Elmer J. Schorr and his Committee was one of the best ever held in Duquesne’s history. Starting at Priscilla and Aurilles. The parade moved north on Aurilles, east on Kennedy to Fourth St.. north on First St. to north on Fourth St to Grant, east on Grant to Third, north on Third to Hamilton, east on Hamilton to First, south on First to Grant, west on Grant to Second and south on Second to the reviewing stand at the municipal building.

Allegheny County Commissioners John J. ‘Kane and Harry K. Fowler led the parade. Now that the homecoming is over, speaking for the hundreds who participated in making it possible, we say it was a lot of hard work with a great deal of fun.

Speaking for the community, we want to thank the hundreds who worked so diligently to make this year’s homecoming celebration possible. You did a mighty line job and the community thanks you for your effort.

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7 Responses to Voices From Duquesne – July 4th Edition

  1. Gary Stojakovich says:

    I think that most folks who have left Duquesne for one reason or another have truly in their hearts never left at all. Roots that had substance with great people who loved and looked out for one another, It was truly a blessing to be a part of that. So it is even today when we read the comments from those whom we know and feel that same love for Duquesne City lil D.C.

  2. ken kraz says:

    july 20th will be 50 years in the duke for me.. wonder what it would be like NOT living here.todays society is pretty much bad everywhere,.not just here.no raging fires,tornadoes ,hurricanes or earthquakes

  3. David Marks says:

    Thanks Jim and thanks to all who participate in this blog. I have lived and worked in 29 states and Canadian provinces and learned that you cannot truly return to your childhood home. But Guy Achtzen nailed it – we are still proud to have grown up in Duquesne [Guy, we lived in the same building above the Chinese Laundry from 1960-1962].

    From California to Florida and all states in between – Yinz are the BEST! Praise be to God who has blessed us all through thick and thin.

    By the way everyone – lots of DHS grads and friends are gathering again this Sunday, July 10th at Playmor Lanes on Buttermilk Hollow Road at 6pm. Half of us didn’t even bowl last time, and we had great fun.

  4. Laurine says:

    Happy Fourth of July, Jim, and all those other Duquesninnies (my Granddad’s name for us) who read and love your blog and our “HOME” no matter what shape she is in. Love reading how much everyone loves the blog!! (because it means you can’t stop writing or you would break everyone’s heart! – LOL).

    • Jim says:

      I hope you have a GRAND 4th as well. I certainly don’t plan on stopping writing about Duquesne and the surrounding area. I brings me a lot of comfort, not only in the writing about our hometown, but in knowing that inspite of her rather “tattered” condition, we all love her just the same!!! Keep reading!!

  5. What is your name? = Robert Yuna
    Years in Duquesne = 1948-1966
    Where do you live now? = Toronto/Buffalo
    Comments-Jim, you’re doing a hell of a good job on this blog which is a lot more work than it might seem at first blush. Someone mentioned the Plaza Theater “down street” in Duquesne. It was a terrific theater with character and style. I can’t tell you how many great movies played at The Plaza. I remember seeing “The Mountain” with Spencer Tracy and Robert Wagner (who looked like he was about 15) at The Plaza. Not a great movie but good enough many years later to motivate me to buy the movie. It actually held up pretty well. I’ve lived and worked as a journalist all over the world including India, Pakistan, Uganda, Nigeria and Grand Cayman (the best) yet Duquesne remains the heart of it all.

  6. A great job once again, Jim. Love it.

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