Valley public transit pioneer honored for years of service

John “Chummy” Lignelli recalls the first meeting of elected officials from the Mon Valley to discuss public transit.

It took place 30 years ago in Donora, where Lignelli was borough council president. He was elected mayor in 1993 and remained at the post until he retired last year.

Lignelli said he planned the meeting at a time when two private contractors, 88 Transit and 70-S, provided the only transit services in the area.

The closest public transit service was in the South Hills.

In 1985, the Mid-Mon Valley Transit Authority opened its first office in Donora.

On Tuesday, transit leaders honored Lignelli at the Residence at Hilltop in Carroll for his service to the authority.

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