04.29.2009 – Families, friends and fellow IAM members gathered at the William W. Winpisinger Education and Technology Center as part of a national observance of Worker’s Memorial Day to honor the memory of those who perished on the job or from work-related diseases.
Each year the IAM honors its fallen brothers and sisters by inscribing their names on bricks that are placed at the Workers’ Memorial at the Winpisinger Center. Family members and co-workers honored the memories of twenty-one IAM and Transportation Communications Union (TCU) members.
“The IAM cares very deeply about its members, their families and the work our members do. We struggle and fight hard every day to assure that when one leaves for their job, that they return home safe and sound,” said IAM President Tom Buffenbarger. “We don’t always win that fight, but it inspires us to work ever harder so that others don’t have to endure the pain and grief of losing a loved one. Only when we all make safety and respect for workers paramount will we cease to have a ceremony like today.”
Inscribed bricks were placed for the following members: Kathryn E. Fowee, Local 162; George N. Lincoln, Sr., Local 700; Walter Bailey, Local 1776; Robert D. Faulkner, Local 1969; Bill J. Zupcic, Local 1347; Barry A. Withrow, Local 656; J. Bill Oxley, Local 656; Jeff Hart, Local 733; Randy J. Hoegger, Local 1713; Steve C. Voermans, Local 1713; Michael Hatton, Local 83; Carlos Trevino, Local 83; Alice Roth, IAM/TCU Local 1908; Roger Desrochers, Local 922; Terry Kitchens, Local W484; Don Zrust, Local 1037; Donna Lynn Remata, IAM/TCU Local 1315; David Pierce, Jr., IAM/TCU Local 6091, Wilfred Negron, Sr., Local 1776 and Al Scarcelli, Local 1005. Also honored was former IAM Communications Director Robert Kalaski who passed away in 2008 after a courageous battle with cancer.
This year’s service was the 20th annual observance of Workers’ Memorial Day, which began in Canada and is now observed every April 28th in thousands of services around the world. In the United States, this year marks the 39th anniversary of passage of the Occupational Safety and Health Act which created the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to set and enforce workplace safety standards.