Workers Memorial Day Services in Missouri and Illinois marked the dignity of work and attributed the decline in workplace fatalities to the hard work of unions, something critics – and even some union members –overlook when they think unionism is only about wages and benefits.
St. Louis Labor Council’s 35th Annual Union Labor Mass remembers workers lost
By TIM ROWDEN
St. Louis – Remembering our fallen brothers and sisters, the Greater St. Louis Labor Council and the United Way of Greater St. Louis celebrated the 35th Annual Union Labor Mass – now known as the Robert O. Kortkamp Memorial Union Labor Mass – May 4 at the Shrine of St. Joseph.
The names of members who died on the job specifically or from work related illness or injury during 2013-2014 were recognized with a special ceremony before the mass outside the church.
Patrick J. Bray – Laborers Local 660
John Hahl – Laborers Local 829
Chris Rawson – Laborers Local 829
“We are gathered today to honor our union brothers and sisters who, in the course of their daily work, made the ultimate sacrifice of giving their lives,” said Amy Phillips, labor liaison with the United Way of Greater St. Louis. “May we remember them always.
“We celebrate the vital significance of union workers lives and craftsmanship, much of which we admire in the restoration of this beautiful church, the Shrine of Saint Joseph, Patron Saint of the Worker.”
AN OFFERING FOR WORKERS
In a change from previous memorials, this year’s mass included a special recognition of workers’ lives, skills and craftsmanship, with a presentation and display at the altar of workers’ tools of their trades.
“Recognizing the dignity of work and the physical demands of our work, we bring to the altar now tools of the trades as symbols of the many tools, machinery, and equipment union workers use every day to build, to educate, to connect, to create and to care for our community,” Phillips said.
The tools presented included a shovel, tinsnips, a book (a copy of Studs Terkel’s Working), a broom and a saxophone.
“The shovel represents how deep we go in our meaningful daily work.
“These tinsnips represent how we create things that last.
“This book reminds us of all who educate others in the community.
“This broom represents how we make our world a better, cleaner place.
“This musical instrument and paper remind us of how we provide beauty and inspiration to the world around us.”
FIGHTING FOR WORKER SAFETY
Unions have championed and fought for worker safety throughout their history, influencing state and federal regulations and investing in health and safety education and technical expertise to protect workers’ health and often save lives.
As union members, we can never forget what is at stake as we fight for workers’ rights.
Madison County Federation memorial celebrates addition of no new names
By CARL GREEN
Alton – The Greater Madison County Federation of Labor’s annual Workers Memorial Day Service April 28 had something special to celebrate – a full year without a work-related fatality in the Federation’s service area, and thus no names to be added to the Workers Memorial Monument in Gordon F. Moore Park.
Alton Mayor Brant Walker joined Madison County Clerk Debbie Ming-Mendoza in reading the 146 names of the deceased presently listed on the monument.
Walker, the son of a Labor organizer, said he was delighted that the city’s showcase park could accommodate the event.
The park was built by union volunteers and has become the jewel in Alton’s crown of public facilities. The Memorial, too, was built by union volunteers, dedicated in 1994.
“It’s wonderful what Labor can do, and that can be seen from what Labor has done in this park,” Walker said.
Dustin Miller of the OSHA office in Fairview Heights noted that Workers Memorial Day commemorates the founding of the agency 40 years ago. At that time, the nation had an average of 38 workplace fatalities each day; now the average is 12.
OSHA has only 2,200 inspectors nationwide to inspect 8 million workplaces. Miller’s own office has only five inspectors for 39 counties in southern Illinois.
Miller said a new study by UCLA disproves claims that OSHA regulations cause job losses.
“OSHA does not kill jobs,” Miller said. “OSHA keeps jobs from killing people.”
NOT JUST WAGES
Madison County Coroner Steve Nonn said the decline in workplace fatalities can be directly attributed to union efforts, something people overlook when they think unionism is only about wages and benefits.
“Aren’t we here to speak for others who can no longer speak for themselves?” he said. “We are here to mourn the dead and fight for the living.
“We’re still under attack,” Nonn added. “Without the union, the protections workers enjoy today wouldn’t be there.”
Kenny Meyer, a retired member of Ironworkers Local 392 who worked to get the memorial built, described how the project came about, and credited former Federation President Charlie Moore with helping to make it happen.
“It took a lot of good people, laborers and craftsmen, to get this built,” Meyer said.
Everything was donated except for the statuary, which was paid for with donations.
and the organizers collected $52,000 in donations to pay for that.
Union volunteers helped build the roads, ball diamonds, soccer fields, tennis courts and electrical systems, among other things throughout the park.
St. Louis Labor Council Labor Mass remembers members lost
The Greater St. Louis Labor Council’s and the United Way of Greater St. Louis celebrated the 35th Annual Robert O. Kortkamp Memorial Union Labor Mass May 4 at the Shrine of St. Joseph in downtown St. Louis.
As provided by their union locals, members who died on the job specifically or from work related illness or injury during 2013-2014 were as follows. An asterisk (*) indicates an active member who died on the job.
• AFT St. Louis Local 420 – Frank Richter.
• Firefighters Local 73 – Paul Deatherage, Thomas Duncan, William Ecker, Ronald Fiala, Daniel Leo Fitzgerald, John Fogelbach, Peter Gentile, Harry Hausmann, George Hohmann, Howard Hoven, Wilbert Jansing, William Lahay, Martin Lammert, James McManon, Donald Morgan, Troy Pendley, William Rudden, Walter Schubert, Elmer Shores, William Siegmund, George Smith, Frank Stockman, Larry Stringer, Richard Thompkins, Patrick White, John Young.
• Glaziers Local 513 – Frank Scimo.
• IBEW Local 1 – Donna R. Beardon, John J. Bender, Tom Beussink, Delores Boehner, Bret C. Bonney, Edna L. Brawley, David H. Buchholz, William Burrous, John J. Calcaterra, John R. Cotner, Burnes H. Courtois, Loyce L. Criner, Harry C. Cummings, Richard L. Deimeke, Robert R. Faudi, Elmer O. Foerstel, Thomas E. Foerstel, Robert J. Franklin, Joseph V. Friedman, Nicole L. Galloway, Joseph Glover, Dorothy L. Guinn, Neil H. Gwin, Charles G. Hahn, Ralph A. Handley,
Larry T. Handshy, Charles R. Harris, Daniel. T. Harris, Edward D. Hastie, Ronald L. Hastings, Harold E. Heineman, Chapin E. Johnston, Timothy Jones, James L. Kemp, John C. Keplinger, Ronald W. Kinzler, Arthur E. Koch, Jr., Alvin Kroeter, Warren W. Kuhnert, Robert A. Kurtzeborn, James G. Lampson, Jr., Joe L. Larry, Lorraine Lattimore, William E. Lee, David W. Linneman, Arthur E. Lutz, Jr., William Martin, Jr., Charles E. Mather, Eugene E. Mayfield, John L. Maynard,
Robert J. Muller, Donald L. Musick, Leonard L. Napier, John W. Neymour, Curtis A. Niewoehner, Tony M. Pagano, Charles J. Peat, Harold Polston, Owen A. Prince, Thomas F. Przyzycki, Carroll T. Quinn, Ronald C. Robinson, Jack G. Robinson, John T. Roche, Donald L. Rolf, Ralph W. Rudy, William B. Sandrock, John F. Sanfilippo, Robert J. Schaeffer, Lamont A. Scherer, Wayne L. Selhime, Melvin L. Simpson, Darryl Sklebar, Roland D. Speer, Larry L. Stevens,
Melvin J. Stoff, Leroy E. Struckmeyer, Frank V. Thompson, James H. Thompson, Walter E. Tracy, Larry L. Viero, Robert E. Voges, Leodis Waller, Arthur P. Walsh, Charles G. Watts, Earl B. Weber, Arvil White, James R. Whitehead, Vonza P. Wilborn, Grant J. Williams, Walter L. Wise, Chester E. Wittich, Alois Wolf, David N. Woodson, Edward E. Wright.
• IBEW Local 2 – Lenon “Curt” Amburgy, Martin Bunch, Thomas Donovan, Francis Forsythe, Connie Gibbs, James B. Harris, Jesse Jones, John Routt, Stephen D. Williams.
• Ironworkers Local 396 – Timothy Ard, Donald E. Black, Jack L. Blevens, Patrick H. Brown, James W. Carnahan, Bernard Cobillas, Jr., Robert H. Cook, Eugene D. Cronk, Thomas W. Crowell, John L. DeClue, Russell H. Epperson, David R. Evans, Michael D. Ferguson, John L. Fraley, Sr., John H. Freeman, Jr., Leonard G. Harris, Thomas E. Hunter, Dennis R. Keck, Jerry W. Kile, Fred H. Morris, Charles I. Morrow, Charles S. Mounts, Norville Naes, David G. O’Brien, Roger W. Pratt, John W. Smith, Robert D. Swartz, Aubry O. Tharp, Jr., Cyril J. Wiechens.
• Laborers Local 42 – Louis Arndt, John Benjamin, Lindell Clonts, Grant Davis, Harvey Davis, Douglas Egerton, Leroy Feldman, Francis Harris, Jr., Mark Ivie, Edward Lewis, Jason Mathews, Archie McElroy, James Dale Montgomery, Steve Nichols, Harold Pearia, Mark Werts.
• Laborers Local 53 – Napolean Brumfield, Thomas Jackson, Jason Weiskopf, Romel Wyatt.
• Laborers Local 110 – Richard Artz, Donald Aylward, Floyd Barton, Chris Cliffe, Orland Eberwein, Joe Ewing, David Green, Stanley Halter, Roy Illert, Michael Klein, Charles Lowe, Arthur Markus, Freeman Nappier, Arthur Nelson, Peter Peer, Donnie Pratt, Rodney Reiter, Anthony Sargent, Bernard Schwantner, Alfred Shoults, Richard Slankard, Donald Stewart, Daniel Sutter, Bill Whitley, Leroy Williams, Felton Wilson, Milton Winkelmann.
• Laborers Local 660 – Patrick J. Bray*.
• Laborers Local 829 – John Hahl*, Chris Rawson*.
• IAMAW District 9 – James M. Bagwell.
• IAMAW Lodge No. 777 – William Christensen, Fred Hollmann, David Jacks, Daniel Kopp, John Spink, Jan Towell, Phillip Womble.
• NALC Branch 343 – Thomas J. Alton, Paul Armbruster, Sr., James L. Buehne, Robert J. Carnaghi, Martin Carrera, Jr., Charles A. Christenson, James M. Connelly, Ladislaus Cutak, Jr., Donald Degener, John J. Dempsey, Dennis L. Derda, James R. Dyer, Earl E. Ehrhard, Gregory Evans, Donald G. Ezell, Edward J. Foster, Claudie Godbee, William L. Hamblin, Harry P. Henderson, Jr., Norman E. Hill, Paul R. Hirsch, Gary A. Humberd, Donald J. Hyde,
Roger L. Jany, Kenneth Johnson, Dennis E. Kreienhader, Edward E. Laurent, Vincent A. Manno, Mark McClendon, Clarkes W. Moslander, John P. Mulderig, Edwin M. O’Loughlin, Willie W. Puckett, John F. Regan, Edward A. Rickert, Jr. Harold W. Robinson, James E. Schoolcraft, Steven J. Schwent, Helen L. Simmons, Gregory Smith, Harold C. Still, Russell B. Stillman, Richard A. Treu, Milton C. Vemmer, George Walton, Jr., Emanuel Wasinger.
• Sheet Metal Workers Local No 36 – Howard Barteau, D. J. Boyett, Milton Bradley, James Burnett, Billy D. Coleman, Jack Copeland, Harold “Howie” Cowgill, Michael F. Dent, Clarence Dublar, Jerry Elliott, James Evers, Thomas L. Gideon, Allen H. Hachmeister, Hermit Kavanagh, Jr, Leroy Langhans, Gary Lapresto, Charles LePage, Duane “Tootie” Lett, John K. Lorson, John McElyea, James J. Murphy, Charles V. Newman, Carrol E. Niemeyer, James R.
Nilges, Jr., Emery L. Northway, Patrick Pardo, James L. Poe, Herbert H. Prenger, Donald Reynolds, Marvin Roderick, Mark Rooney, John P. Roussin, Walter Schilling, William Sodemann, David W. Todd, George F. Turlin, Nicholas P. Vanderver, Melvin Vitt, Harold F. Webmeyer, Harold Wilderman, Howard L. Wimmer, Jack J. Winkler, Donald Wissman, John L. Wright, Sr., Albert Yanko, Michael J. Zlotopolski.
• Sprinkler Fitters Local 268 – Jim Creamer, Sr., John O’Donnell, Bob Stender, Bruce Swope.
• UFCW Local 655 – Irvin H. Althage, Margaret H. Autrey, Norvell J. Becker, John Belt, Robert Berczynski, Linda A. Bingham, Louis Binion, Daniel Boushie, Ernest W. Bressie, Frances E. Brougham, Dorothy Brouk, James H. Brown, Donald A. Buhr, Joseph P. Bundy, Patricia B. Burnes, Sandra Burrows, Linda Cochran, Margaret J. Cole, Evelyn M. Coleman, Shirley Daude, Walter E. Davis, Warren Deen, Gerald Diel, Salvatore A. Digrispino, Jo Ann
M. Dohrendorf, Unia Katherine Donathan, Sandra K. Douglas, Marvin D. Durham, Anne M. Eanes, Josette R. Emory, Dorothy J. Fischer, Daniel D. Fleschner, Frances M. Fogarty, Joseph Follmer, Berry Ray Forbis, John Freeman, William Gollahon, Donald R. Gregor, Norman J. Haar, Gerald Hanley, Virginia L. Hardwick, Patricia Harling, Carole Hernandez, Maudine Horton, Shirley M. Hummel, Lovella Hutton, Ernestine B. Jansen, Carolyn L. Jaycox,
Michael J. Juracek, Dolores P. Karcher, Peter B. Karney, Joseph W. Kaufman, Ida Kelly, Nicolena Kennedy, Gilbert L. Killoran, Janet Kinder, Robert S. King, Ronald F. Kontz, Myrtle A. Koste, Betty L. Lark, JoAnn Leahy, James H. Lee, Silas B. Lewis, Patricia C. Liddell, Parker Lillian, Mary Ann Lohmeyer, Thomas Long, Donald Lowry, Nancy M. Marciante, Betty Jean Marshall, Lois L. Martin, Curtis R. Mason, Lela Mae Matiskie, Clyde McClure,
Janice D. McKay, H. Regina McLain, Donald Melton, Bradley S. Meyer, Ruth Ann Montgomery, Mary G. Morales, Frank Moritz, Richard E. Mortimer, Mildred Moschetto, Rosana Norber, H. W. Obermann, Ralph H. Obermeier, Inez V. Orf, Mildred L. Ottens, Lillian Parker, William Petty, Frank R. Putney, John Rachow, Sr., Eleanor J. Rehg, Louis Reiter, Mary F. Richards-Weygant, George E. Riester, Jean Ritchey, Alfred Rustemeyer, Thomas
Ryan, Susanna Sackett, Alice Sagahorn, Phillip Salvo, Clara Scanio, Rae I. Schaper, Robert V. Serniak, Jack C. Shockley, Jean A. Shoemaker, Mary Skeen, Clifford G. Smithee, Velma L. St. Gemme, Seymour Stein, Ellanor Stewart, Margaret Strebler, Mary K. Svaiko, Beryl Sweetin, Edmund Szwargulski, Albert Taylor, Frank Taylor, Mary Tivoli, Richard L. Topp, Helen Travelstead, Helen Urban, John A. Valentino, Virginia P. Vance, Vicki L. Waller,
Florence C. Wehlage, Mary Welch, Iva M. West, Bella Wilbanks, Charles Wilbanks, Mary Louise Wilcoxen, Dorothy J. Williams, Alois Wolf, Stella Yarbrough, Ronald L. Young.
• United Media Guild TNG-CWA Local 36047 – Sherwood Kerker.