Hank Salvatore, 92, former Pa. State Senator

The Philadelphia Republican City Committee (RCC) announced this afternoon that former Pa. State Senator Frank “Hank” Salvatore has passed away. He was 92.

Salvatore represented the 5th District in the Senate from 1985 through 2000. Earlier, he was a state representative in the 170th District from 1973 until 1984.

Frustrated by what he believed was an unfair amount of services and benefits Northeast Philadelphia received in return for taxpayers' dollars, Salvatore was a vocal proponent of the secession of the Northeast from the rest of the city and had unsuccessfully lobbied for it to become "Liberty County."

State Rep. and RCC Chairman John Taylor released the following statement:

“The entire Republican City Committee is deeply saddened by the loss of Senator Hank Salvatore. As both a State Representative and State Senator, Hank Salvatore was a tireless worker for the citizens of Northeast Philadelphia and the entire City. During his decades in Harrisburg, Hank championed many causes for his constituents and was a mentor to younger legislators, including me. We will miss his wisdom, experience and friendship.  We extend our condolences to Gloria and the entire Salvatore family.”

Former RCC Chairman Vito Canuso told me via telephone that “[Salvatore] was a real stand-up guy for Philadelphia and the Republican Party.” He added, “He did an outstanding job representing his constituency as well as the City of Philadelphia. Any statewide benefits Philadelphia had were due to his efforts. As a Republican under the Thornburgh and Ridge administrations, he delivered for Philadelphia."

Joe DeFelice, the executive director of the RCC, related to me a very personal story.  “I first got involved in the local party in the late '90s. My own greatest memory was in 2000 when George W. Bush stopped into Philly [at the Vogt Recreation Center in Mayfair]. We were three interns walking outside, and I asked him [Salvatore] if I could meet Bush. He said, “Come here,” and took me inside to meet Bush.”

Contact Featherman at John@Featherman.com