Regarding the Dec. 9 front-page article “Breaking free”:
Like Tabitha Rouzzo, I spent my days at New Castle High School determined to escape the Pennsylvania town. This was almost 50 years ago, and it was already going downhill. Luckily, my parents were middle-class and education-oriented, so college was my easy way out.
Some of my classmates who left for higher education returned to be the accountants, lawyers and teachers of present-day New Castle. No one denies our town’s decline, but to New Castle natives, it’s more than the setting for urban decay and limited opportunities. It’s a place where families have lived for generations.
We have felt not only the pain of plant closings but also the excitement of high school football games that the whole town turns out for. We take pride in the Zambelli family’s spectacular fireworks displays and in turning over a teacup anywhere in the world to see “Shenango China, New Castle, Pa.” imprinted on the bottom.