By Tom Davidson
Herald Staff Writer
SHENANGO VALLEY —
Members of Our Lady of the Valley Council 4003 of the Knights of Columbus had an enviable decision to make recently: How to spend almost $100,000 fairly.
The money was invested and was part of the former Farrell group’s Christopher Home Corp. and contained proceeds of the sale of the land in Hermitage where the group once met, its president Tony DeMartinis said.
He led a campaign to begin the complex process of dissolving the home corporation and establishing an endowment with the proceeds of it, about $100,000.
The money will be invested with the Catholic Foundation of the Erie Diocese and its annual earnings will be split among the Kennedy Catholic High School Scholarship Fund, the Prince of Peace Center, the clergy health and welfare fund, and the retirement fund for religious of the diocese.
“We’re not really a social organization,” DeMartinis said.
So, it made sense to endow the funds, he said.
“Charity is number one,” he said.
The group has nearly 100 members now and they overwhelmingly voted to approve the measure, he said.
“So we’re dissolved,” he said of the home corporation, which was formed initially to assist the widows of deceased members through insurance policies.
“I wanted to remember the guys who started this,” DeMartinis, who joined the group in 1957 two years after it formed.
It honors men like the Rev. John Chizmar, who was the group’s first chaplain, and Joseph J. David, who was the first grand knight.
The other names of founding members are familiar to anyone who knows Farrell: Andrew Billack, Aldrich Buzga, Guy Zupo, Albert Suchy, Edward Kocott, Joseph Namey, Edward Turosky, Vincent J. Glgliardi, Richard Morocco, Edward Remp, Dr. John T. Namey, Matthew A. Stefanak and Paul Chintella, among others.
“Times have changed,” DeMartinis said. “I’m 75. There’s a lot of history that’s going to be leaving us.”