So Hawley, PA has somehow grabbed your attention as a possible get-away destination! My name is Will Wyckoff, and as your tour guide I’ve been asked to introduce you to Faces & Places around our 191-year-old borough. It is my honor to do so.
After some thought, I decided that it would serve you best if I were to take you on a brief trip down Hawley’s Memory Lane; take a look at some of its roots…give you a feel for the folks who helped shape Hawley, PA. To me, there are some terrific people who are at our borough’s roots.
The names of Ann Morgan, a dedicated nurse who was also our mayor for many years, World World II Purple Heart vet “Billy” Bea, and the late Paul Finan our local barber (who once played himself in Playing for Keeps filmed right here in Hawley opposite actress Marisa Tomei) are just three great people off the top of my head who I wish any of you could meet. J. Vance Hunt, his son Phil Hunt, and John Dyson reported the local news for decades via their Pike Wayne Eagle and News Eagle. Jack Brown was our go-to pharmacist and crackerjack pool shark while Jake Dougherty and Lukie Dexter of Hawley’s Shanty Town section were two of the more famous “characters” to ever take a drink or get down and dirty inside the borough limits. (Both were clever enough to live in their respective homes just over the borough line!) Still others are Bank President Frank Kelly who required no down payment on our first home in 1974 while his son Frank grew to be a Monseigneur in the Catholic Church, setting a wonderful example for all of us.
Saving the best for last, a friend still today is Joseph Beilman, Sr. who at age ninety-seven still resides on Wangum Avenue after ninety-two of those years! An elected official as Tax Collector for forty years, Joe might well be the poster child for the sort of folks who have made Hawley a great place to live. Let me share:
When I was a young dad, it was Joe and his sons Michael and Joe, Jr. who never blinked an eye when on several occasions I sheepishly inquired as to whether or not I could “Square up on payday” as I needed a tank of gas for our car. You see, I had little cash and no credit cards back in the day. We should not forget people of such stature like all those above. Over the years, these are the type of people who have made visitors glad they visited our town. Come see us. You will as well.
Author of Birds on a Wire, Rabbit Trails, and Slow Fire Burning, Will and his beautiful wife Kay live in a 175 year old structure, their home in Hawley to four generations of family members . While enjoying careers in education, together they raised two sons, two daughters, and two basset hounds! WillWyckoffbooks.com