C-RS Connection 

May 2021



Many people look at Memorial Day as the unofficial mark to the beginning of summer. But the significance of the day is so much greater than just some time off.

Some records show that one of the earliest Memorial Day commemorations was organized by a group of formerly enslaved people in Charleston, South Carolina less than a month after the Confederacy surrendered in 1865. They were, of course, honoring Union dead. Several towns and cities across America claim to have observed their own earlier versions of Memorial Day or “Decoration Day” as early as 1866.

Regardless, it is certainly true that Memorial Day was born after the American Civil War. It originally honored those lost while fighting in that war. But during World War I, the holiday evolved to commemorate American military personnel who died in any of our conflicts.

The first national commemoration of Memorial Day was held in Arlington National Cemetery on May 30, 1868. However, it was not until 1971 that Memorial Day became a federal holiday.

Each year on Memorial Day a national moment of remembrance takes place at 3:00 p.m. local time to commemorate those veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice for their country.

“Our debt to the heroic men and valiant women in the service of our country can never be repaid. They have earned our undying gratitude. America will never forget their sacrifices.” – Harry S. Truman

Maryann Sivak

C-RS National President


Welcome to our newest C-RS members. The following list of names reflects new members who have joined (or have been reinstated) since April 15, 2021. Please review the list - you just might find someone you know. 

    • Susan Barniak - Westlake, OH
    • Russ Bilowich- Akron, OH
    • Patti Bromley - New Cumberland, PA
    • Eileen Courtney - Center Valley, PA
    • Connie Edwards - Erie, PA
    • Jennifer Garcia - Fountain Valley, CA
    • Christopher Hynak - Arlington, VA
    • Julieanna Kapelan Brown - Madison, TN
    • Nicholas Kosar - Vienna, VA
    • Rosemarie Massaro - Wooster, OH
    • Kevin Menard - Denton, TX
    • Elizabeth Nuzback - Springfield, IL
    • Mark O'Connell Girard OH
    • Marie Pasternak - Ransom, PA
    • Monica Progar - Washington, PA
    • Bill Schwarz -  Wheeling, WV
    • George Siecko - Toano, VA
    • James Steeley - Greensburg PA
    • Di Ann Tarhalla - Salinas, CA
    • Nasstasia Yard (Yaremczuk) - Victoria British Columbia

    Again, we welcome these new members and look forward to a lasting relationship.  We hope they become involved by bringing their talents and skills to the C-RS. 

    We are proud to announce that since January 1st of this year,

    we have added over 100 new members! 


    The following members were lapsed in their membership dues for the February 2021 billing cycles. These members will, unfortunately, be archived from the active membership rolls of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society. If a member is archived and eventually does pay their dues, their membership record will be reinstated.  If you know of anyone listed here, please reach out to them and ask that they consider renewing.

    • Denise Eusebio - Columbiana, OH
    • Rev Michael Evanick - Schererville, IN
    • Linda Ferraro - Durham, CT
    • Mary Jane Guidos - Lowellville, OH
    • Michael & Barbara Karr - Laguna Niguel, CA
    • Karen Krenitsky -  Butler, PA
    • Andrea Macura Granville NY
    • Thomas Medwick Clifton NJ
    • Pamela Moore - Santa Monica, CA
    • Hillary Schwallie - Novelty, OH
    • Sally Staruch - Lorain, OH
    • John Sweet IV - Herndon, VA
    • Dr. Gregory Walsko - Winter Haven, FL 


    Dear Carpatho-Rusyn Society Member:

    The 2021 Nominating Committee is currently seeking names of members in good standing who you feel could lead our organization as members of the National Board of Directors. When nominating a candidate, please include 3-4 sentences about what this member would bring to the nominated position; i.e. skills, talent, etc. All nominated members will be contacted by the committee regarding their interest in being placed on the ballot as a candidate. Please note: with the availability of various media sources, nominees can now live anywhere in the United States or Canada.



    Nominations may be submitted to the nominations committee by;

    • Email at membership@c-rs.org (preferred), or
    • Postal mail to - Carpatho-Rusyn Society, Attn: Nominations Committee, 915 Dickson Street, Munhall, PA 15120-1929
    • Please account for delivery time when submitting through postal mail, so it is received by the deadline. For email submissions, please use BOD Nomination in the subject line.

    Nominees for the Board must:

    • Be current in their dues payment; 
    • Be able to participate in monthly board meetings via teleconferencing or other media sources;
    • Have internet access and be comfortable communicating via email, teleconferencing, or other media sources;
    • Be able to actively participate on assigned committee(s),
    • Be able to fulfill their fiduciary duties to the organization;
    • Be able to participate in any fundraising for the organization, and
    • Be familiar with and comply with the C-RS by-laws. (A link to the by-laws can be found on the homepage of the C-RS website.)

    Nominations can be made for the following Board positions. Note, a nominee may be nominated for more than one position, and that nominee can confirm what position he/she may be interested when contacted by the committee.

    • President: Chief executive officer of the organization, shall preside at all BOD meetings, represent the society as appropriate and have general supervision of and general management of the affairs of the organization.
    • Vice-President: Exercises the powers and duties of the President when called on to do so.
    • Recording Secretary: Takes official minutes of all meetings; maintains all corporate documents including meeting minutes, records and reports; provides notices and documentation as required by the by-laws or the Board.
    • Chief Financial Officer: Generates and maintains financial records; oversees budgeting, accounting, and investments; pays bills and invoices; responsible for filing taxes; custodian of contracts and business records.
    • Chief Financial Administrator: Deposits financial vehicles and non-financial valuable effects of the organization; maintains depository records; reports regularly to the board.
    • Chief Information Officer: Oversees electronic membership records; supervises general mailings; helps the organization with its information technology needs.
    • Trustee (six positions): Actively participates in day-to-day business of C-RS through fundraising and actively serves on board committees; audits the financial books annually.

    For further details or with any questions please contact the committee at membership@c-rs.org or phone 412-567-3077 and leave a message. You will receive a response as soon as possible.

    Yours in Rusyn Unity,

    C-RS Nominations Committee


    The Anna Donson Memorial Scholarship, in its fifth year, will be once again offering a $1000.00 scholarship. The committee consists of Dr. Paula Donson, Paul Lohin, Pamela Hemzik, Sarah Latanyshyn, Dr. Dolores Fidishun, Elizabeth Diles, Cathie McAdams, and Sharon Jarrow .

    The aim of the scholarship is to assist students who themselves are members of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society, or who would advance the Carpatho-Rusyn culture, language, or tenets of the Carpatho-Rusyn Society. The purpose of this $1000.00 scholarship is to recognize and provide financial assistance to an outstanding student enrolled in a higher education program (2 or 4-year duration or graduate program) or any accredited institution that offers certified academic, professional, technical, or vocational training.

    The scholarship wishes to encourage and highlight the excellent contributions that our Rusyn people are making to their communities and beyond. The scholarship also intends to accelerate the advancement of our young Carpatho-Rusyn population, expanding the development of our Carpatho-Rusyn citizens, within their community and state through higher education, advanced learning, and professional academic or vocational work.

    The Anna Donson Memorial Scholarship application form and criteria are available online at the Carpatho-Rusyn Society website: www.c-rs.org Go to HIGHLIGHTS on the home page, click on the 2021 Donson Scholarship button from the The Anna Donson Memorial Scholarship, scroll to the bottom of page, and click on the application button to print the application form (also posted is the Scholarship Description and Criteria).

    Dr. Paula Donson



    Calling all genealogists! 

    Research on our Carpatho Rusyn athlete project is progressing as our list is rapidly approaching 50 athletes. Some of these nominees still need to be vetted (fact checked) as to insure that their ancestral home towns listed are located in the recognized Carpatho-Rusyn homeland. We are continuing to search for more definitive information about the six nominees below. If you can help, please contact me at George.pawlush@wilkes.edu.

    Norm Larker, MLB baseball

    He was born in Beaver Meadows (Hazleton), PA in 1930. His mother’s name was Susan Zeleznock, who was born in the USA. Her parents, Michael and John Zeleznock, came from Slovakia. Larker played with the Dodgers and Giants from 1958 to 1963.

    Steve Swetonic, MLB baseball

    Born in Mt. Pleasant, PA (1903), he died in Canonsburg, PA (1970). His father, John Swetonic Sr, and mother, Susan Bushick, were both born in Austria, 1862 and 1864 respectively. Steve Jr. played with the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1929 to 1935.

    Bernie Kosar, NFL football

    He was born in Youngstown, OH. His parents attended St. Mary’s Byzantine Catholic Church. He played for the Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, and Miami Dolphins from 1985 to 1996.

    Andy Uram, NFL Football

    Was a star football player at the University of Minnesota and later with the Green Bay Packers from 1938 to 1943. He was born 1915 in Minneapolis. His parents, Andrew Uram Morin and Mary Uram Morin, came from Austria-Hungary

    Johnny Logan, MLB baseball

    Johnny grew up in Endicott, NY. His mother was Anna Senko (1896-1997) He played in MLB from 1951 to 1963, mostly for the Milwaukee Braves.

    Ed Vargo, MLB umpire

    He was a major league umpire from 1960 to 1983. Vargo (1929 to 2008) was born and died in Canonsburg, PA. His maternal grandfather, Michael Hunka, and grandmother, Pearl Palan/Paluha were both born in Austria. They married in Feinstein Sambour, Galicia in 1899.


    Do you have questions about where your Baba came from? Where to find records in Europe? Or stateside information about your family here in America? Where to begin? Where to find resources?

    Let us be one of those resources! A team of genealogy research experts can be found at the C-RS genealogy forum. 

    To access the Forum:

    • From the C-RS website. www.c-rs.org home page, scroll down to the “Genealogy” icon (link) and click.
    • You will be directed to the “Genealogy” page, please read the terms & conditions.
    • Scroll down to the “Join Genealogy Discussion Form” button at the bottom of the page and click.
    • You will be asked to log in with your email address and password, the discussion form and the recent forum update page will appear.
    • You have the option to either reply to an existing topic or create a new topic. 
      • For new topics click on the “Topic” button and enter the subject and topic content (body). Note: To prevent spam you will be asked “I’m not a robot”, respond accordingly.
      • To reply to an existing post, click on the topic title from the list, and then click on the “Reply” button to enter your response.
    • Then click the “Post” button.

    Attachments can be included as part of the reply or topic, i.e. pictures and/or documents. To insert an attachment:

    • Click on the “Choose files” button at the bottom of the page.
    • Select the file(s) to be attached. Up to 20 files can be uploaded. Each file should be less than 20 MB.
    • When complete, click on the “Post” button
    C-RS Genealogy Forum


    All C-RS members are cordially invited to attend

    C-RS virtual Series


    Chat and Learn

    June 15, 7:30-9PM  Eastern Standard Time

    Featuring Barb Popovich


    This information will be important to anyone having ancestors in southeastern Poland - Lemko - Galicia. 

    It will cover many online locations to search for Birth - Marriage - Death records.

    Zoom - Registration Required to receive the links to the program

    To Register visit the C-RS website and login with your email and password.  Click on "Events" from the menu bar then click "Our Events" from the drop down menu.                

    A zoom link will be sent closer to the event.

    2021 Genealogy LEARN AND CHAT Sessions

    2021 – DISCUSSION

    2nd Wed of Month.  1.5 hours 7:30-9PM

    15-minute Speaker



    Zuzana Palovic

    Behind the Iron Curtain

    February (members only)

    Bill Tarkulich

    State of Slovakia Research

    April 14

    Chris Black


    June 15

    Barb Popovich

    Poland Research

    August 11

    Chris Black

    Ukraine Research

    September 8

    Sharon Jarrow

    Travel in Ukraine

    November 10



    May 12, 2022

    Mary Osborne

    I’m a Boyko!


    As you may know, the Carpatho-Rusyn Society Heritage Program is now part of the Rusyn.fm family. Rusyn.fm is an internet based Rusyn radio station in Slovakia.

    The broadcast is under the main title of ГОЛОСЫ РУСИНІВ АМЕРИКЫ / HOLOSŶ RUSYNIV AMERYKŶ / VOICE OF RUSYNS IN AMERICA, but is still known as The Carpatho-Rusyn Society Heritage Program.

    The program can be heard on Sunday afternoons at 3:30 pm Eastern Time. Rusyn.fm can be accessed through any computer with internet access or as a smartphone application.

    To listen, visit Rusyn.fm. To listen live at broadcast time, please click: rusyn.fm/play
    To listen to any of the archives, please visit our media page: 


    The Southeastern States Branch has been significantly growing. Therefore, it has become necessary to divide the Southeastern Branch into the Georgia Branch, Florida Branch and Carolinas (N&S) Branch on our website. If you have any friends or relatives who might be interested, please let them know. Have them visit our website under "Chapters" and they just need to click “join email list.” Contact Bonnie at bb@c-rs.org for additional information.

    Carpatho Rusyn Society Heritage Program

    Hosted by: Dean Poloka

    Sundays 3:30 - 4:00 p.m.  (Eastern U.S. time)

    Host Dean Poloka is a master choreographer and ethnic researcher of traditional Carpatho-Rusyn music, song and dance.

    For more information:  https://c-rsmedia.org/radio-site/ 

    Listen Live

    Copyright © 2021 Carpatho-Rusyn Society. All rights reserved.
    915 Dickson St.
    Munhall, PA 15120
    (412) 567-3077

    The Carpatho-Rusyn Society (C-RS) is a national 501(C)(3) organization founded in Pittsburgh, PA in 1994. As stated in our mission statement, the C-RS is dedicated to manifesting Carpatho-Rusyn culture in the United States and supporting Rusyn culture in the homeland in east central Europe. Information about joining C-RS and a membership application may be obtained on the C-RS membership website at https://carpathorusynsociety.wildapricot.org.