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Growing up Grange

By Staff | Apr 21, 2016

CAROL SHETLER/The Luminary Helen (Lauchle) Mayer of Montoursville (left), and Robert 'Bob' Hively, South Williamsport, are lifelong supporters of the Grange movement championing agricultural causes. The twosome attended the 63rd Legislative Banquet of the Lycoming County Pomona Grange at the social room of the Hughesville Fire Hall on April 8, 2016.

HUGHESVILLE – From their youth and into adulthood, Helen Mayer and Robert ‘Bob’ Hively not only grew up in Grange, but have invested decades of time in the organization.

Mayer, originally from Huntersville, said, “It’s a wonderful organization, family oriented. You don’t need to leave your children at home.” Mayer received a 50-year member pin some time ago. With her late parents, Harold ‘Babe’ Lauchle, and mother Glenna (Kresge) Lauchle, Helen’s home grange is Allegheny. “I’ve been the treasurer there many years,” said Helen, a 1952 Hughesville High School graduate.

Hively has duo memberships, one at Eagle Grange near Montgomery, and another at Bottle Run where he is currently president. “In 1943 at age five, I became a Juvenile member at Eagle Grange attending with my parents, Wilbur and Roxanna (Pauling) Hively. Just about then is when we left our 100-acre farm at Alvira,” said Bob Hively.

As an adult, he left the farming business but it remains in his blood. Bob has worked in two banks, sold insurance and is currently employed at Lowe’s in Montoursville. “I’ve always been in sales. I go crazy when there’s no one around,” he added.

In addition to serving on the board of the Montgomery Alumni Committee, Hively volunteers in the kitchen at New Covenant UCC in Williamsport.

Guests with words of greetings attending the ceremony included Representative Garth Everett, Lycoming County Commissioner Rick Mirabito and Eric Houser, speaking for State Senator Eugene Yaw. All praised State Grange President Elizabeth Downey for rallying Grange members in the state’s recent resistance to fund several agricultural related agencies.

A letter from Downy read by her husband Bernie Downey stated, “The Governor’s recent hold up of state funds caused unnecessary damage we’ll deal with for years to come.”

Dean Roush, from the College of Agricultural Sciences at Penn State University, was the keynote speaker. His subject on growing ‘genetically manipulated crops’ (MG) came from his experience working in Australia, India, China as well as the United States. “Four hundred million acres are now in MG production in 28 countries. They are producing crops which outgrow weeds and are resistant to drought,” he said.

Roush also commented on the current subject of origin labeling so consumers know where products are grown.

Master of Ceremonies for the evening was John Hall. Additional banquet committee members included Vivian Hall, Paul Burkhart , and Ruth and Frank Poust.