Schuylkill County Company To Close After 112 Years

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ORWIGSBURG -- A company which has been around for 112 years is closing its operation in Schuylkill County. Employees are heartbroken and the owner says some of the blame is government regulations.

A wall of sewing machines are now silent and up for sale at Fessler U-S-A near Orwigsburg, a clothing manufacturer.

Only a few employees remain, because most of the 130 workers have been laid off. Plant officials say the factory will close.

Lisa Kolbe said she will soon be laid off.

"It's hard to find a job right now although I can't say that for myself," said Kolbe.

But most of the workers, including Ann Marie Ondisco said she and others are not as lucky as Lisa.

"Our family is still here. But we won't be able to stay here because there is nothing for us to go to. I have to pull up roots again and start somewhere else," said Ondisco.

Sandy Quinter said she been at Fessler for years and enjoyed her job.

We're all very depressed, we don't know if we're going to get other jobs, it`s very hurtful," said Quinter.

Employee Gail Harvey said she made a lot of friends while working at Fesslers.
"What are you going to do? I never expected to be here when it closed up I will tell you that," said Harvey.

Company President Walt Meck said more federal bank regulations, in part, forced him to close.

"This economic crisis was too big, too long, too deep and we didn't have enough capital to last out the storm," said Meck.

The building is huge. Company officials said they would like to lease out at least part of it.  If interested the folks at Fessler U-S-A would like to hear from you.