Is this the Steelers parade route?

Faithful reader “Yinzer” sent me an email pointing out this photo from the PG showing what appears to be a woman waving a Terrible Towel as the Mayor’s funeral procession goes by:

Then I found this one too:

I can’t decide if these ladies are doing a cool thing, if these ladies are doing a disprespectful thing, if these ladies are doing a stupid thing, or if these ladies think they are participating in another Steelers parade.

As Yinzer said:  “Only in Pittsburgh.”



  1. Mike
    September 8, 2006 10:12 am

    In the first picture, it looks like everybody is waiving. In the second, it looks like they’re crying. You would think they would use the towel for what it actually should be for: wiping away tears.

    But Bob liked the Steelers. And he loved Pittsburgh–especially all its quirks. I think he would be glad that they were taking time out of their day to pay their respects to him.

    That said, the same thing could happen in Baltimore too. If the Mayor died there, people dressed up Ravens gear would line the streets.

  2. Hazel Hazel
    September 8, 2006 2:58 pm

    I saw more than one person doing just this on the TV coverage. I thought it was an honorable tribute.

  3. TS
    September 8, 2006 3:04 pm

    U might have a point about it being a stupid thing except that
    A.) Mayor O’Connor was known to be a rabid Steeler fan
    B.) Check the PPG and Fox sports…there is a picture blown up of the Mayor waving a Terrible Towel sitting in his former seat “watching” the Steeler /Miami game and C.) His son Corey not only lead the terrible towel wave at the game in honor of his father but also sang the Steeler polka at his funeral mass.

    Considering the above three, I refuse to think it gauche that anyone waved a terrible towel along the funeral route….

  4. PS
    September 8, 2006 3:14 pm

    Nothing wrong with it. . . Bobby O would have loved it.

  5. tom
    September 8, 2006 4:03 pm

    If this were in Green Bay I’m certain there would be dozen’s of cheese heads worn for the funeral procession.

  6. Matt
    September 8, 2006 5:22 pm

    This was a tribute to Bob. Nothing wrong with it at all.

  7. latchkey
    September 8, 2006 6:02 pm

    It was actually kind of neat. I’m not a big football/Steelers fan but I could see why people did this and feel that Bob most likely got a kick out of it. It was part of “celebrating” his life. I’m glad that Corey did what he did in church as well. When my mom died and her funeral was in a catholic church we were actually told that we could not do this, we could not do that, blah, blah. I was just glad to witness some comforting smiles. I was also pleased to NOT see politicians’ faces during the ceremony. It was not about them – it was about Bob and the family.

  8. cate
    September 8, 2006 8:04 pm

    i hope you don’t mind–i sent a link to this article to (best sports coverage on the entire internet) and they ran it as an item in blog roundups (all credited to the burgh blog of course).

    i thought it was a slice of pittsburgh to share w/the world.

  9. Jo Janoski
    September 8, 2006 8:34 pm

    I recognize that as Greenfield Ave. Having grown up in Greenfield and having romped that street many a day while going to St. Rosalia School, I can tell you that football in Greenfield is not a sport–it is _religion_. So since football is religion, then waving a Terrible Towel would be like a sacrament or spiritual ceremony…a holy ceremony, if you will, and thus religious, devout and respectful. So it’s OK, you see…

  10. pittgirl
    September 8, 2006 8:46 pm

    Burghers, you rock. Excellent, well thought out responses to my question. :)

    Cate, thanks.

  11. yinzer
    September 8, 2006 10:45 pm

    It was not only OK, it was perfect.

    The thing that struck me was that the Terrible Towel has begun to transcend the Steelers and is becoming THE icon for Pittsburgh. Think of it as the official “flag” of the Yinzer Nation ;)

  12. Aws Com
    September 9, 2006 2:21 pm

    The towel wave is cool. His son’s Steeler Polka was incredibly, incredibly tacky which somehow (I can’t work out the logic) was only made worse by his not knowing more than the first line of the song.

  13. Matt
    September 10, 2006 1:09 am

    The Steeler Polka at the funeral was great and it made all of us smile. Get over it.

  14. Jess
    September 10, 2006 8:01 pm

    I was standing right by the woman in the first photo (I’m in the black shirt and tan pants) and when she started doing it, I was somewhat taken aback, but I eventually decided it was cool. Only in Pittsburgh? Yes. But cool. And Yinzer’s right–the Terrible Towel is more than just a Steelers icon at this point.

    There were also a ton of people in Steelers jerseys in Oakland and Squirrel Hill. I’m not sure if this was more related to its being the first game of the season or to O’Connor’s love of the Steelers, but they were everywhere.

    And count me in with the people who liked the Steelers Polka. I liked his eulogy much better than his older brother’s, which I thought was pretty tame and not especially father-son specific. Takes guts to lead a mourning congregation in a fight song–and I suspect his dad would’ve loved it.

  15. Joe
    September 10, 2006 10:39 pm

    Jess I think from the look of the photo your pretty hot…

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