Civil War in Woodbury





Woodbury, PA – The Morrison’s Cove Herald of Martinsburg reports that “heated” discussions have been taking place at local meetings involving the Southern Cove Joint Municipal Authority and Woodbury resident Garry Black.
Recent reports from the small town in Pennsylvania indicate the issue started out as a simple question from Black, regarding the way the authority bills its customers – but within weeks, it escalated to the point of dividing town residents into two conflicting and sometimes quarrelsome groups.  The manner of billing for the sewage and sewer lines remains at the heart (gut) of the conflict.
“Pardon the pun, but I haven’t seen this much crap floating around the community for at least a decade,” exclaimed Dave Potchak, former teacher and current school director.  “Ten years ago or so, the local school superintendent tried getting me fired and the flinging of innuendos and insults hasn’t been this prevalent since then.”
“I sure do hope that cooler heads prevail in this situation before things get really backed up,” he concluded.
Business owners' worries differ
Reports that PA Governor Tom Corbett called the National Guard to this hamlet cannot be confirmed by the Associated Press, but town business owners at Abby’s Day Care, The Woodbury Café, OIP, Miller Motors and Nastasi’s Bar and Grill are concerned about safety in the little town.

The Woodbury Café

“I won’t hesitate to call my uncles in Barnesboro,” said Joe Nastasi, Sr., proprietor of the Bar and Grill. “I have little fear of property damage if war breaks out. That’s one advantage of having family in the mob,” he concluded with confidence.

Black has family in the area too, anonymous sources have confirmed. He also has life-long membership in the (link) "Black" Hand Organization, an affiliate of the Italian Mafia.  "I'm a peace loving man by nature." explained Black. But if they're going to force my hand, it shall be the Black Hand that responds."
Other residents are not as confident as Nastasi or Black. Charlie Guyer, former owner/operator of Guyer’s General Store has taken precautions if total chaos breaks out.
 Guyer's Store Front

"I maintain a friendly relationship with a biker gang that congregates each Sunday at my soda machine," confirmed Guyer. “They tell me not to worry at all. They promise if trouble develops, they will take charge.”

Dani Horton of neighboring New Enterprise is also pleased that the bikers are close by. “That one guy has buns of steel,” she added enthusiastically. “I’d go for a ride with him anytime.”

Bikers getting prepared to defend the town
Different strokes for different folks
Despite interview attempts by news personnel, most residents preferred to remain non-committal regarding the sewage billing issue.  A few, though, did not hesitate when it came to voicing their concerns.

“I'll be garsh darned if I get involved,” proclaimed Eddie King, also of New Enterprise.  “I surely don’t want to become the leprechaun in this whole mess.”
"We haven't felt this insecure since John Slaugenhaupt and Jim Wylie terrorized the town in the 70's and 80's," screamed an unidentified woman on the street.
"It's Obama's fault," another man bellowed from an open window on Main Street. "The government has blown so much smoke up our a_ _, we don't even need a sewage system anymore."   

Garry Black and his family
Woodbury resident Alan Drenning also stated his opinion. “I’m from the Saxton area,”said Drenning. “We placed our sewage in the river for years and never gave it a second thought. The river was already polluted heavily with radioactive fallout from the nearby nuclear reactor. Paying for sewage is ridiculous even though there are some huge mutant carp now-a-days in that river. Plus my daughter Erin is an attorney, so I am not worried about any legal matters either.”

So be it
“It’ll have no effect on us,” explained Wayne Corle, President of the Potter Creek Men’s Social Club. “We’ve been under a lock-down every Thursday during our meetings for years,” he joked. “As long as the turmoil remains in the borough, we have nothing to worry about out here.”

A different view
Life-long resident, Jason Barton takes a whole different approach to this potentially exploding affair.
"My entire family hasn't given this issue any thought what so ever," Barton elaborated.  "I'm just happy my mom, Cindy, is speaking to me again. For a while there, she was not only upset that I teased her on facebook for falling on my porch, but also for the fact that I used to teach at the local high school. And to be frank, she hates teachers.  Since I switched careers, life is great again and we all get along fine. And we've found this new fight in the borough is a great change for us - it gives my mom something else to dwell on."  
Potchak agreed. "That's one positive outcome of this potential war over sewage," he explained. "It gets the community's mind off of other troubling issues taking hold in the area. I think the sewer controversy hit at just the right time. Now the Plan Con Building Project might take a back seat to this new concern."
Problem may stem from schools
Potchak has another theory. "This whole issue goes back to the days of Ben Van Horn and Bob St.Clair," explains Potchak. "Dr. Van Horn, superintendent at the time, wanted to pass a resolution where by administrators and teachers were required to also live here in the district. Since those good old days, things have only gone down hill for sure. There were no sewage issues back then at all and never a stink of any kind in the entire area (other than the usual manure spreading in local fields). I think I should bring back the idea of mandatory residency to the board and order tee shirts stating 'Bring Back Ben & Bob' too.  The Good Lord only knows how much I miss those guys."

60's-like attitude
Six miles south of the town, sitting at Stern's Gun Shop in the area known as Texas Corner, Harry Guyer, Jr., offered his ideas on the whole matter. "Back in the sixties, we just took the protest to the streets," said Guyer.

Like many of the others quoted here, Guyer has an affiliation with the local schools too. A former teacher/coach, now conservationist, outdoors man and activist, Guyer sat at the shop preparing NRA applications and cleaning one of his 886 guns in his prize-winning fire arm collection.

"I'm just waiting for a call to join that biker group," stated Guyer. "It would be awesome to hop on that old Harry Davidson and get this area to return to the good old days when times sure were a lot better."
 Harry Guyer Jr., circa 1970, Shippensburg:
FBI FILE PHOTO, J. Edgar Hoover Office

A call for calm
Mike Miller, who resides just outside of New Enterprise, owns a rental unit in Woodbury. "Yes, I have to pay sewage bills in a few different locations," explained Miller. "But this whole community needs to remain calm and orderly. I don't want to see a civil war take place here," he continued. "I worry for the safety of my entire family and all my neighbors. If I wanted drama in my life I would have settled in the Hopewell area."

Mike Miller upon hearing the news in Woodbury
Ray Reasy, of Rookeez Sports Bar in Six Mile Run and president of the South Woodbury Water Authority summed up the situation very well with his advice, too. "Go Steelers!" proclaimed Reasy. "I sure hope the draft helps the black and gold."


My Roots - The Potchaks - circa 1927

My Roots - The Potchaks - circa 1927
From Left: Son, Steve - Dad, Frank - Mom, Anastasia (Makar) - Sons; John, Mike, Frank, Chuck (Author's Dad) - Twins, Pete & Mary - Daughter, Catherine. Photo taken in Wilmore, PA