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County Workers’ Memorial Day Ceremony To Be Held Sept. 25

FREWSBURG — The Chautauqua County Workers’ Memorial Committee will be holding its 20th annual Workers’ Memorial Day on Saturday, Sept. 25, at 11 a.m. at the Chautauqua County Workers’ Memorial Site at Erlandson Overview Park on Oak Hill Road in Frewsburg.

Workers’ Memorial Day is a day of remembering all of the men and women from Chautauqua County who have lost their lives on the job, in the line of duty, or died from job related causes. This year’s ceremony will recognize more than 160 individuals who have passed away on the job since the 1880s.

The event is free and open to the public. This year’s event will feature a variety of speakers including keynote speaker Peter DeJesus, president of the Western New York Area Labor Federation.

The ceremony will also include a special dedication of a bell in memory of Mary Lou Dunning, a former member of CSEA Local 807/6300 and Buffalo-Niagara Frontier Retirees Local 903. There will also be a plaque dedication to honor deceased members of the Chautauqua County Worker’s Memorial Committee: Hobart (Hobie) Rhienhart, Mike Piazza, Helen Sischo, and Joe Sweeny.

The Chautauqua County Workers’ Memorial Site is made possible through the cooperation of Chautauqua County government, Chautauqua County Parks Commission, local labor organizations, and by donations from supporters.

“I encourage residents to join us on September 25 as we remember our fellow workers and loved ones who have lost their lives while carrying out their duties,” said PJ Wendel, Chautauqua County Executive and co-chairman of the Chautauqua County Workers’ Memorial Committee. “It is by honoring them and their memory that we are constantly reminded about the importance of creating and promoting safe work environments for employees.”

Current members of the Chautauqua County Workers’ Memorial Committee are Wendel; co-chairman Doug Stock, president of Dunkirk Central Labor Council; co-chairman Dave Wilkinson, Jamestown Central Labor Council; secretary and treasurer Robert Dando Jr., National Conference of Firemen and Oilers SEIU 32BJ (retired); James Bickhart, chairman emeritus; Mary Ellen Decker, New York State United Teachers (NYSUT)–Dunkirk Teachers (Retired); Adam Dolce, executive director of the United Way of Northern Chautauqua County; Don Emhardt, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 106; Hank Hoisington, CSEA Local 903/3; James Kurtz, CSEA Local 903/3; Bonnie Peters, CSEA Local 807/6300; Walter Robertson, NYSUT-Dunkirk Teachers; Amy Rohler, executive director of the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County; Steve Skidmore, CSEA Local 807/6300; George Spitale, Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Local 418; and Gary Swain, Operating Engineers Local 17.

For more information about the event, contact the County Executive’s Office at 753-4211.

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