On Saturday, August 22, 1998, three law enforcement professionals were honored by Bro. James L. Ernette, R. W. Grand Master, by being made Masons At Sight.

Colonel Paul J. Evanko, Commissioner of the Pennsylvania State Police, Lieutenant Colonel Joseph H. Westcott, Deputy Commissioner, and Trooper Roberto Soto were Initiated , Passed and Raised to the Sublime Degree of a Master Mason at this special event held in Philadelphia.
Over 500 Masons packed Corinthian Hall at the Masonic Temple with the overflow crowd watching the proceedings on closed-circuit TV in Renaissance Hall.

Over 500 members
attended the program.

The Degrees were conferred by the uniformed Pennsylvania State Police Masonic Degree Team, with special dispensation from the Grand Master to confer the degrees on multiple candidates, administering obligations simultaneously, and with the special style b efitting a para-military organization.

Brethren and Troopers
enter the Lodge room.

The team members were dressed in the traditional Pennsylvania State Police gray dress uniform, with navy blue neckties, Lodge officer collars, and white leather aprons bearing the emblem of the degree team-- a variation of the PSP emble m with the seal of Pennsylvania replaced by the square and compasses. The presiding Worshipful Masters wore the hat appropriate to their rank-- the Troopers wore the traditional Campaign (Smokey the Bear) Hat, and the Lt. Col. wore a Garrison Hat, with “ scrambled eggs” denoting his rank.

A full house in Corinthian
Hall,included over 100
Pa. State Troopers
in formal gray uniforms.

The Entered Apprentice Mason’s Degree was conferred on active candidate Roberto Soto by Trooper Edward J. Lizewski. The Fellowcraft Masons Degree was conferred on active candidate Joseph H. Westcott by Trooper Charles J. McBreen. The Master Mason’s Degree was conferred on active candidate Paul J. Evanko by Lt. Col. George P. March. Only active law enforcement officers, special guests of the candidates, and the R. W. Grand Master, participated in the Third Degree.

Trooper McBreen, coordinator of the Harrisburg Unit of the PSP Masonic Degree Team, presented special recognitions to DDGM John Witmer and Worshipful Master George Lebo of Steelton-Swatara Lodge No. 775, for their assistance and support of the degree team s as they rehearsed for this program during the last seven months.

At the close of the meeting, Grand Master Ernette gave to each attendant a commemorative coin and pin. Souvenir paper Aprons were also available, bearing the emblem of the degree team.

Souvenir paper aprons were
made for this special program.

Following the degrees, a reception was held in the Atrium on the 9th floor of the Wanamaker Building, preceding a Banquet in the Crystal Tea Room.

Atrium Reception

Additional Photos

©1998, Grand Lodge of Pennsylvania | Credits