Tonawanda News

August 31, 2013

TUCKER: Working the United Way

The Tonawanda News

Tonawanda News — After last week’s United Way Day of Caring, Diane Krause, a member of the Erie-Niagara Sunrise Exchange Club, wrote the following poem. (It’s also a reminder that the UW campaign kicks off at a Jeans and Beer event on Friday at Sikora Post.)

“At the United Way Day of Caring, the Exchange volunteered to work. I went to 36 Whiting, and found a five-yard pile of dirt.

“After moving just 10 wheelbarrows full, I about broke my back I asked Colleen to call for help before I had a heart attack.

“First came John and Barbara B., they were the window crew. They cleaned the screens and windows and made them look like new.

“Then in answer to my prayers came Jerry, Joan and Sue. They helped me with the wheelbarrow and did some shoveling too.

“We had a little wheelbarrow with the wheel missing a piece. Wayne was there to fix it with a coat hanger and elbow grease.

“So Wayne and Jerry and I took to moving dirt. Then Barbara T. came along snd shoveled-never shirked.

“Joann Mierzwa came on by and brought with her, Bill Miles. When Bill picked up a shovel our faces filled with smiles.

“Wayne said, “From all that working, I’m covered with dirt today.” And Jerry said, “It’s inevitable, we’ll all end up that way!”

“Yes, we finally moved that pile, we were happy don’t you see. We united to help each other, that’s the way that it should be.

“So, if you’re down and out can’t seem to find your way. Just call a friend to help a friend, that’s the United Way.”


When it rained on Monday, it triggered a saying my mother often repeated: “Rain on Monday, rain four days after.” Looks as though it’s true again as it rained off and on Tuesday and Wednesday with more in for forecast for this weekend. My mother was a great weather-watcher and all in the family recall her knowledge of the phases of the moon and what they meant. At the first quarter, she’s say whatever weather was at that day would continue for four weeks, if the quarter moon was tipped, it would rain. I’m not sure what her percentage of correct calls was, but it couldn’t be worse than today’s professionals.


“We can’t believe we’re agreeing with you,” city editor Neale Gulley and reporter Mike Regan said the other day. Seems they each had a story to cover and although they left in plenty of time, were late because of all the signals in NT. “There’s a stop sign or signal at every corner,” Mike complained. “The city must be in the Guinness Book of World Records for them.”

Neale related his time-wasting grief with the signals. “It took me darn near 15 minutes to go from the News through Webster Street. Take them all away.”

Glad they are both on my side.


This month’s issue of the Lumber Shover, the newsletter from the Historical Society of the Tonawandas, has some great photos on their picture pages. One, especially as the Carrousel Museum is opening its new rides this weekend, shows the Herschell-Spillman Company’s employees in 1916. The fun part of the photo is the sign on the building identifying the company as the “Largest Merry GoRound Factory in the World” and underneath, it reads “Outfitters, Carousselles.” That’s a different way to spell carrousels. There’s also two photos, one taken in late winter of 1911 with numerous lake ships awaiting the opening of the shipping season at Tonawanda Harbor and the transition of the harbor seen in the second photo to so many pleasure crafts filling the harbor today. It’s worth a membership in the historical society to see the photo section.

Just wondering

A caller inquired about the auction on Thursday of property and houses in North Tonawanda. He wondered if those who purchased the property had to prove, just as in a real estate deal, where the money is coming from and background on the buyer. He was disturbed that the city (and it’s not alone in this) does not check nor has guidelines on who can purchase this property. He had a great point that in this day and age, with all the terrorism, drug dealers and other awful crimes, the city should be aware of where the purchase money is coming from. He said he asked one of the city officials at the event if any background or other checks were done and was told a firm “no.” He also wondered where the money from the sales goes and does the city have a special fund set up for its use. His inquiry was not so much against the auction, but trying to make sure about the sellers and their backgrounds. “Are we too trusting?,” he asked.

Contact community editor Barbara Tucker at 693-1000, ext. 4110 or email