Joseph Zimbicki

April 17, 1918 -

Joseph Zimbicki was a CCC boy at the S-96 Hillsgrove Camp on the then Wyoming State Forest, now the Loyalsock State Forest. Joseph, in addition to his regular CCC duties like roadwork, was also the night watchman for a short time. He had to keep the fires going in the various buildings. Joined at the age of 16 requirement was18 but he had a visit from a welfare worker on his 16th birthday who told him not to worry. Filled out his paperwork saying he was 18 and he was off.. “I loved it out there, loved it in the woods and the mountains.”

The camps were pretty isolated and the CCC boys’ free time consisted of playing cards or hiking. Joseph’s favorite pursuit was to hike the Jackson Flats CCC Trail to the High Knob vista which had been an earlier project of the camp. There he acquired the hiking bug and has been walking ever since. Over the years, he has participated in various charity walks, such as juvenile diabetes, breast cancer and heart walks.

His granddaughter, Julie Senchak wrote a book – The Many Hats of Joseph Zimbicki – about his life. The book was for Joe’s 95th Birthday. He’s among what Tom Brokaw calls the Greatest Generation, having spent four years in the U S Army. Served in the 90th Infantry Division (the “Tough Ombres”) and landed at Utah Beach in Normandy on D-Day +2. Last year he was among a group of former civilian core members who received a recognition plaque from the Pennsylvania Parks and Forests Foundation honoring his service to the CCC.