Updated: Apr 3
To be 90 years old and move half way around the world from Reading, PA to Hilo, Hawaii takes a lot of courage but that’s what Lou and his wife, Joann, have done!
Lou is chosen as a donor to highlight his Act of Kindness for phoning in with his change of address. This saves both time and money for the Foundation.
So who is this brave man?
Lou Maiero grew up in Chester's Eighth Ward. The Maiero family moved down from Jessup in upstate Pennsylvania when Lou's dad found work at Sun Ship.
Lou had the distinction of playing on the very first baseball team at St. James High. Lou was cast in the Eddie Stanky (Major League 1943-1953) mold. What he lacked in size and talent, he more than made up for with a fiery spirit and the ability to come up with ways to beat the opponent. After high school, he played in the Delco League for the Sun Village team managed by "Bananas" Weidner.
Sports was now in Lou’s blood and it would launch opportunities at Villanova College. The 17 year old Lou enjoyed his two new roles assigned by Father Dwyer. First, Father Dwyer had Lou tutor some of the football players who were struggling academically. Next, he was told to “Coach” the 7th & 8th Graders at St. Thomas in Baseball and Basketball. This laid the foundation for things to come later. It also helped to have roommates that were tough as nails. About 50% of the school attendees back then were returning WWII veterans and going to Villanova on the “GI” Bill. This made Lou tough. Tough enough that his 150lb club team became champs IC4A in 1950. In 1951, Lou graduated with a degree in Economics.
He got married to Joan Davis (RN Nurse) in 1953 and they started their family. With one child born, he was drafted. Uncle Sam sent him to Paris France to work at the Joint Construction Agency. It was here that some of the lessons he learned from his Villanova Economics Professor, Dr. Father Bartley, paid off. Lou and two others in the role of US Army Scientific and Professional Corps managed all of the contractors and implemented the Marshall Plan. While in Paris he attended the Sorbonne to learn French.
After an honorable discharge, Lou come home in 1957 and for three years worked at the Ford Motor Company in Chester, PA . Then he moved to DL where he hooked up with an outfit called Global Union and worked there for seven years as a Production Control Manager until 1967 when he got a call from the General Battery Corp’s president. In short, he made Lou an offer he couldn't refuse and the family moved to Reading Pa. Lou now had 4 children: Louis, Janice, Stephen, and Marisa. (Now there are 10 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren)
When Lou retired 20 years later, in 1988, he was Corporate Director of Production and Inventory. All the while, he was compiling an enviable reputation as a sports official in high school basketball, football and soccer. From 1957-2018 as both a referee and umpire, He received a Governor Citation for 50 years of refereeing football. He also served as president of the Berks County Basketball Officials & spent a decade as commissioner of the Inter-County League.
Finally, after 61 years and at age 89 even Lou thinks it may be time to put the striped shirt in mothballs.
"I'm the oldest in the world," Lou said. "I think I may have pushed the envelope too far," he admits. "But I think I'm still able to do it, especially in football. When I broke in, four officials worked the games. Now they have six. Heck, I I could work until I was 100 with that setup. But of course I won't. I just have a lot of fun with it and I enjoy working with the young guys. They tell me I'm crazy, but I think they enjoy working with me."
Now I’m in Hawaii. Aloha!