Hometown Wonders About Bronson Tribute

09/08/2003 10:18AM

Residents of the late star Charles Bronson's birthplace of Ehrenfeld, Pa., about 60 miles out of Pittsburgh, are debating whether to name one of the town's streets in his memory, the Associated Press reports.

Although a local campaign has already been launched to remember Bronson -- who was born Charles Buchinsky on Nov. 3, 1921 -- some of the town's 234 residents oppose the idea because they say he rarely visited his childhood home.

Ehrenfeld council president Albert Keller said: "Someone asked for permission to have a sign put up at the entrance of town about a year ago, and the borough council voted against it. They said Charlie didn't do a damn thing for this town."

But others are seeking $1,500 to spend on a memorial, along with placing Bronson's name on the street where he was born.

Bronson died Aug. 30 in Los Angeles, after rising to fame as an international star. He left the family shack in Ehrenfeld (where he had been one of 15 children of a coal miner and his wife) when he was drafted into World War II and sent to the Pacific to serve.

Before that, Bronson (he took that name when he entered movies in Hollywood in the 1950s) had seen his father die when he was 10, and at age 16 he followed his brothers into the mines -- earning $1 per ton of coal.

After such bitter memories, Bronson had long vowed he would never return to Ehrenfield.

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