When the announcements of citizens of the year came at Jefferson Day back in July, Eileen Grady was eating funnel cake and John Focacci wasn’t paying attention. Both wound up being Jefferson Township Mayor Russell Felter’s picks for citizens of the year, and both said they couldn’t have been more surprised. And both were honored with a proclamation at Wednesday night’s township council meeting.
“I was sitting in my chair, waiting for the fireworks to start, listening to the music and eating funnel cake,” Grady recalled. “I had powdered sugar all over myself. Then he (Felter) called my name and I had to clean myself up quickly before I went to the stage.”
Focacci recounted asking Felter in the weeks leading up to Jefferson Day if he’d made his picks for citizens of the year yet.
“Russ told me he had the woman picked out, but that he was scraping the bottom of the barrel for the man,” Focacci said, to the laughter of those in attendance. “That night, after Eileen’s name was called, I sort of stopped paying attention. Then my wife told me that he was talking about me, and I just said, ‘oh no’.”
Besides the proclamations, the pair each received a plaque from the township.