No Controversy over Columbus in Pittston

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PITTSTON -- Columbus Day is a holiday that's recognized every year in America, but some have been calling for it to be done away with.

For folks in part of our area, Christopher Columbus serves as an important symbol in the community.

For varying reasons, Columbus Day has been trending nationally on social media. Some view the holiday as controversial. To some folks in Pittston, where a Christopher Columbus statue was put back up after it was hit by a car last year, the holiday is looked at as historical.

"I don't see it as a controversial holiday in any way," said Knights of Columbus member Fred Orkwris. "You learn what you learn in history about it and that's what we learn. They still teach the kids the same things today."

For Curtis Lewis of Pittston, the statue being in place again is something to celebrate.

"Oh my God, I was waiting for this to go up. Now, it's well-protected and I'm glad. I'm glad it's up."

Around the country, many statues that have been deemed controversial have been taken down.

In Pittston where the Christopher Columbus statue was put back up, a lot of residents in the area believe that the statue is a landmark in the community.

"It's been here a long time, and we hope that it will be here forever," said Marie Griglock. "It's a beautiful statue and it brings back many memories for a lot of people in this area. I think they did a beautiful job with it."

"I'm a middle-aged guy, and it's been here as long as I can remember. Anybody younger than me, it's been here as long as they can remember as well, except for the several months it was down after it was knocked over in the accident," Orkwris said.

"I think it was more controversy when the statue got knocked down than coming back up. That shouldn't have happened, but now, it's fixed and that's a good thing," Lewis said.

One person Newswatch 16 spoke with said that the celebration Sunday involved many different societies and the overall consensus seems to be that the people are happy to see the monument is back and Columbus is honored in Pittston.


  • Lloyd Schmucatelli

    Who’s even got the time to worry about what friggin Columbus did over 500 years ago? Jesus Christ.

    Humans are out of ideas.

  • Sam I Am

    My Comment was flagged, because I said that it would never happen, as it’s not their hood, and they only loot and burn their own neighborhood

  • Idea of Zero

    There is no win here. As a former British colony that had a civil war followed by an industrial revolution? What was all of that worth? Hazelton is a great place to wear body armor, Shendo is half burned down, multiple murder victims in Northumberland County, Mauch Chunk has some weird people doing graffiti everywhere around the natural beauty, and there is less hope for the snobs that occupy the North and just talk nonsense. I see why smart people leave. We need more looney bins or a drop in taxes to stay here.

  • III%

    It was long before I was born and I’m not Italian so don’t blame me so if the rest of the spineless hipsters in pussified America need to blame someone email the local Italian govermentconsultant

  • burtfan16

    Listen Fred of the Knights of Columbus, of course you wouldn’t mind! Columbus was a mass murderer and rapist not to mention he was paid 3 times by Spain to find North America but got lost and flubbed it. 3 times!

    • CeeMe

      Yes, and the perfect indigenous people that idiots want to honor in Columbus’s place used to scalp people and shrink their heads. Some tribes even had slaves, so what’s your point?

      • Givemeabreak

        What does that have to do with the crimes Columbus committed? Folks we have a deflector. I know it’s difficult to stay on topic.

  • Givemeabreak

    If everyone wants to celebrate someone for discovering something that was already discovered I say have at it. On top of it he thought he was in Asia. What a great explorer. Fits in perfectly with the rest of the historical ignorance that seems to be contagious in this country. Amazing what they teach in school. Makes you wonder how many other things they are they making up in the history books.

      • Givemeabreak

        Such a brave person. When the people of Hispaniola didn’t find enough gold for him he would have their hands chopped off or executed. He then was sent back to Spain in chains for his crimes. It was even wrong back then. That’s why he was in chains. It was never right to do the things he did.

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