My Dad and Me

Eric Foos

WCI Steel has a lot of meaning for me in the sense of my family. The company started as Republic Steel and under that company name my father started working there. It was in the summer of 1970. The first department he worked in was the boiler house as a maintenance worker. Several years later he accepted a job as a foreman. He moved up the supervision ladder and became a general supervisor in the blooming mill in the late 70s. He was in charge of the slab yard, where they condition steel slabs before processing. Then in the early eighties Republic Steel was sold to LTV Steel. During this time, LTV spent the supervisions pension fund. When in 1988 LTV Steel was sold, any hope of getting their pension was gone, never to this day to be recovered. 

The mill then became WCI Steel Inc. and still is. WCI took over in 1990 the construction of the continuous caster started, and it went online in 1991. 

When the caster went online the blooming mill closed. My father kept his job, because they still need to condition slabs. The area changed to the SPA and became part of the caster department, which my dad is still in charge of.


The significance of this steel mill is that I work here now. I was hired in May of 1996. My dad still works here. Over the years I have found out how well known and respected my dad is throughout the mill. This makes me even more proud of him. Every day I feel the pride that he feels for being a steel worker. Working here means more to me than just a good pay check and benefits; I feel like I’m part of a tradition in my family. Working here has some advantages. My Dad and I have more things in common now. He can answer my work related questions. With him working here, I work harder at trying to be the best at what I do. I do not want to disappoint him. Through my hard work and dedication I am earning respect in my department. I reflect on the ways this company has supported this family. This company has put me and my sister through college, bought us many things, kept us fed and clothed, and put a roof over our heads while we were growing up. My father is proud of my sister and me. So his hard work has paid off. He and I are proud to be steel workers.