Since retiring, Massa has made five trips back to Italy to visit with cousins still living there and he talks to them via the telephone weekly or monthly just to "keep in touch."
Massa is one of the county's most ardent supporters of a good basic understanding through through education and the everyday use of common sense. Even the the 20's and 30's, this was offered to those who would pay attention. Although not learned in the formal classrooms that we find today in every school district, the underground miners of yesterday in our region had to know a lot of engineering skills, as well as environmental know-how, to prevent and escape the disasters that were found too often underground.
The lay of the coal, the air in the mines, the knowledge of how coal would/could break when being dug by hand or cut with the mining machines, these were all necessary facts and knowledge that was ingrained into each and every miner's being ... if they were to survive.
With the passing of time, all things change. Today, books, charts and computers provide much of the above knowledge for all types of industry. But the basic need for reading, writing and arithmetic still prevail. Appanoose County once excelled in this segment of "common sense" as is attested by the fact that we had/have so many locals who have truly succeeded in making "a difference."