Coaldale VFW Home Gets Facelift (1978)

Coaldale VFW Home Gets Facelift (1978)
(The Valley Gazette, June 1978)

Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 6982 in Coaldale will be wearing its “Sunday best” on Memorial Day 1978 as the result of a public service project by the Schuylkill-Carbon Agency for Manpower (SCAM).

Work by the four-man crew at the two-story frame building—a community landmark more than 100 years old—was completed in plenty of time for installation of officers.

And VFW members were elated over the physical changes in their post home at 1 E. Ridge Street at Fourth Street, a short distance from the Coaldale State General Hospital.

Steve P. Gaydos, the post’s first commander and the present building committee chairman, said the excellent work “is the talk of the town.”

“You should have seen the building before the work began,” Gaydos, a World War II Army veteran, said.

Gaydos, a retired fire boss at the Greenwood Colliery, said: “The general membership (the post has 225 regular members) is happy over the results. We never knew SCAM could do this kind of work.”

The exterior work he referred to was the installation of masonite weatherboard siding, painting the concrete foundation, repairing the rear roof and building a canopy at the front entrance, a small roof at a side exit in the basement and an emergency exit leading from the main floor.

The interior work included sanding and varnishing part of the main floor in the bar area for dancing. The SCAM crewmen also did some painting.

Gaydos, who said he served four years in the South Pacific on New Guinea, north of Australia, retired 10 years ago. He was the post’s first commander after it was formed in 1946. In addition to regular membership, the post has 150 social members.

He said the post home was purchased from SS. Cyril and Methodius Catholic Church, which located nearby in the community. The building, Gaydos said, is more than a century old and was originally used for religious purposes by the First Congregational Church.

Frank Dillman of Frackville was the crew chief and Frank Fuss of Cumbola served as the project supervisor. The Title VI project was funded by the Comprehensive Employment and Training Act (CETA). SCAM provided the labor while the VFW made available the materials.