Gus Andreone – Hometown Hero #WATWB

If we were having a beer, you would be picking on me again.

“Can we assume that you were making rather merry on Thursday Mr. Cratchit?”

“Excuse me?”

“And, excuse me for saying, but if you’re casting him as Bob Cratchit, you are casting yourself as Scrooge.”

“Be careful Cheryl, it’s his turn to buy.”

“Darn, there goes my tip. You boys want your usual?”

“Bring my young friend a Yuengling, but I will have a glass of Meiomi today.”

“Backing off on the bourbon, are we?”

“He’s not backing off, Cheryl, he’s paying.”

“Now that were done picking on me, can we get back to your recent oversight?”

“Who says we’re done? Sorry, what was it I didn’t I do?”

“Here’s your beer; your wine; I see I didn’t miss the punch line. What didn’t he do?”

“He failed to realize that yesterday was the last Friday of the month. He’s been posting feel-good stories for that TV station.”

“What the…TV Station?”

“WATW.”

“WATW isn’t a TV station, it stands for ‘We Are the World’ – it’s a monthly blog fest.”

“I knew that, I just like to poke at you. But, you didn’t post…did you?”

“No, I was nervous about the story I selected.”

“Why?”

“It made me feel good, but I’m not sure it fits the definition of what they are looking for.”

“What was it about?”

“A guy name Gus Andreone.”

“So far, so good. War hero? Philanthropist? Rocket scientist?”

“Veteran. Professional golfer. Lottery winner.”

“And yet you feel good about this guy?”

“Well, he’s a hundred and six years old.”

“I’m sure he feels good about that, but why would you?”

“I hate to interrupt, but if you guys really want to feel good, we have barbecued ribs today.”

“What do you think? They can’t be messier than wings.”

“How much are they Cheryl?

“Oh for the love. What is it with you and prices? A half-rack is the same as ten wings. A full rack is only fourteen ninety-nine – Five dollars cheaper than twenty wings.”

“I was just curious.”

“Anyway, I feel good because he grew up in same town as me, Bridgeville, PA.”

“I don’t think that’s worth sharing with the world. In fact, I’m not sure it was worth sharing with me.”

“How about the fact that back in 1983, he won $1,000 a week for life from the Pennsylvania State Lottery?”

“And he’s a hundred and six?”

“Yes.”

“Wow, talk about sticking it to the state. If I won that lottery, I would have kicked in eighty-four.”

“I know.”

“That’s one point seven million dollars!”

“You math pretty fast when money is involved.”

“My career requires that. Anyway, I think all you have is another reason for Gus to feel good.”

“I know.”

“So, beyond the fact that he lives in the town you were born in…”

“Lived.”

“Huh?”

“He grew up in Bridgeville. He moved to Florida in the late 70s.”

“Good choice for tax purposes, but I’m still not seeing how this works for the world, or his being a golf pro, for that matter. Besides, you don’t golf.”

“I don’t, but I worked as a caddy at the same country club he did.”

“Oh well! You’re practically family.”

“Your ribs are up. Did you guys want another round?”

“Yes. Maybe another beer will help him find a part of this guy’s story worth sharing.”

“Oh, I found it. He was recently honored for his military service. He fought under General Patton.”

“Really? I know you have a thing for Old Blood and Guts.”

“I do, but here, read this:”

“…nothing pleased and humbled Andreone more than when he was welcomed by the country of France last month into one of the world’s most distinguished clubs — the Order of the Legion of Honor, which was established by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1802.”

“Wow, the Legion of Honor. That is impressive. Why didn’t you mention that earlier?”

“It’s hard to get past the other stuff.”

“The lottery winnings? That’s actually a pretty cool side note.”

“There’s more.”

“More? What could top all this?”

“His wife was in the movie ‘Caddyshack’ – a small part, but still…”

“What scene?”

“The pool scene, with the Baby Ruth.”

“Geeze this guy leads a charmed life. Did he have to fly to France to get the award? That’s a hike at one-o-six.”

“Nah, the Consulate General in Miami went to Tampa to give it to him.”

“That was decent of him.”

“You know, what he said wen he was asked about receiving the honor?”

“What?”

I’ll tell you, I was very impressed and very humbled. It was a great moment and a memory of all the ones who served with me and didn’t come back.”

“Ok, Yuengling and Meiomi, you guys need anything else.”

“No, we’re good Cheryl – here’s to Gus!”

“To Gus.”


This has been an unorthodox treatment of the We Are the World Blogfest, an effort to spread good news through blogs and social media. I want to thank, (and apologize if necessary to) this month’s cohosts, cohosts: Shilpa Garg, Inderpreet Uppal, Sylvia Stein, Susan Scott, Andrea Michaels and Damyanti Biswas.


The photos include a few from Bridgeville. They’ve appeared before, but it is a weekend for leftovers.

61 thoughts on “Gus Andreone – Hometown Hero #WATWB

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  1. Charmed life indeed! I remember your crick. It is a feel good story! I definitely think it’s appropriate for WATW. Further proof that good things happen all the time, and lots to Gus :)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m so glad your childhood home that was filled with so much love is still standing. Gus sounds like quite a guy, one certainly worth writing about.

    Great photos down memory lane. I especially like the “crick.” —Ginger—

    Liked by 1 person

  3. so many lines here that made this all seasoned… (and then seasoned leftovers photos) but esp. liked the “making rather merry” dude – we just had Caddy Shack on – well we were showing some Millennials a few scenes – (but will they ever get it?) –
    and had to smile at the “asking the price thing”
    dined out last month with some friends and wanted lamb.
    the dish on the menu was under 15 and they had some lamb special that i was maybe going to get – and decided to ask it was triple priced.. huh

    Like

    1. I remember letting my daughter watch Caddyshack when she was very young. I fast forwarded through the “boring” parts. We still share the classic lines – “I don’t think the heavy stuff is coming down for a while…”

      Triple priced? Yikes! Good you asked.

      I’m glad you liked this post b

      Liked by 1 person

      1. and thank you very little.

        hah!
        my spouse has a caddy shack ring tone – the dribble sound when the golf balls go in…
        and that is what led to “what is caddyshack?”
        and yes – we learned to always ask after one time my spouse ordered a 60 dollar cowboy steak.
        we had a gift card for a hundred dollars (years ago) and so instead of a free meal – we forked over a lot because we did not ask the price on the featured cowboy steak – the T-Bone in the menu was under 20 – and would have likely been just as good – who knows = but we always ask now….

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Hi Dan – what a great life story .. he deserved to be honoured. But equally how lucky he’s been – yet I’m sure he’s given back lots over time … and he’s still humble and happy … great positivity spread here … cheers Hilary

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Telling a good story. you have succeeded. there is way too many unhappy stories in the news. you have already moved into bonus points territory for this fact alone. Telling a story about someone who has reached 100 years of age and is still actively participating in daily events. double bonus points. Telling about a 100 year old war veteran being recognized. triple bonus points. having a moderate sense of self doubt – always Quintuple bonus points. Making me worry what comes after quintuple – you win a free round when the granddaughters finally release me. Perhaps even several – after all you are into bonus points. Thanks Dan !

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I found the all the hills around Monessen, Charleroi and over in my husband’s niece’s new hometown Canonsburg surprising and so beautiful. Up until then I expected PA to be FLAT, FLAT, FLAT! I don’t have any idea why I had that preconceived notion but I did.

    Bridgeport looks like a great place to raise kids. I would love spending time in children’s section of the library!

    Gus is a pretty neat guy. 106 is amazing! I think this was a great post for WATWB. I would like to live so long as long as I still had my wits, eyesight, and could get around with my legs. :)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Western PA is hills and curves. Bridgeville is about 5-10 miles from Cannonsburg. The children’s library is so cool. I love that they did that.

      106? 66 seems like a reach, right now 😏 Gus just seems to have been born under a good sign. But he deserved this latest award.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. I love the sky in the BPL photo. Clear, healthy. Uplifting. I realized I hardly look at the sky these days except when it is raining, so that all I remember is a threatening sky. I told a friend of mine I hadn’t seen in a long time about it, but he said, “It means you are busy and that’s a good thing”. I don’t think so.
    Thanks Dan.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Gus lives to be 106 just to spite the Lottery. What a story! Personally I do not have plans on getting that old but hey I don’t think I have too much to say about that. There is so much history in this post … thank you for the education, Dan. I hope you had a really good Thanksgiving with your family and are not stressing out over Christmas. I vote for fun this year. Give Maddie and your cats a big hug from me. They are adorable … I looked over previous post. (smile) 🐾🐾🐾

    Liked by 1 person

  9. That final photograph was beautiful, Dan. Chartiers Creek is a pretty place to be, especially on a sunny day.
    I also enjoyed thinking about children sitting in a train caboose and reading picture books. What a treat! Thanks for such a cheery post about a Hero, sportsman (golf) and “the genuine article.” So cool he lived a long life and chose payments instead of a lump sum from his lottery win!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Robin. I think the children’s library was one of the best ideas ever. I really like that about my home town. Gus has had (and is still having) a great life. It’s cool to have a tiny connection.

      Like

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