Thursday, June 29, 2017
In Memory of Frank Meluskey
His mother Mary did her best to keep her son's memory alive until she herself passed on.
Like her son, she was involved in the local Democratic party. When Teddy Kennedy came to Bethlehem, she was a part of the throng inside the Steelworkers' Hall.
She carried with her a large photograph of her deceased son. As Teddy made his way down the aisle, she waved the photo and shouted out to him, "Senator Kennedy! Senator Kennedy!"
With all the noise, Kennedy had a rough time hearing Mary as she told him her son was a State Representative who died before his time. She wanted him to sign the photograph, and passed it down the row
And he did autograph it.
When Mary got it back, it read "To Frank, Keep up the good work in Harrisburg. - Teddy Kennedy"
Another thing Mary did was commission a bust of her son. When it was finished, she visited Bethlehem Mayor Paul Marcincin and presented it to him along with a glass casing and a pedestal. Along the pedestal, there are about seven or eight plaques in her son's honor.
Now Meluskey was a State Rep, not a City official. But Marcincin wanted to be nice to this grieving mother and told her he'd accept the gift. In fact, he told her he'd keep it in his office as a reminder of good government.
But over time, Marcincin grew leery of this bust. It actually looks more like The Joker than Meluskey. It began to scare Marcincin. So he decided that he was being selfish by keeping it in his office. He decided to present it as a gift to a group that could always use a good scare.
As with Marcincin, this bust creeped out City Council. They decided it belonged in a place where it could really be appreciated by the public.
Today, you can see the Meluskey bust in the walkway between Town Hall and the City Hall. If you notice the eyes following you, join the club.