MOON TOWNSHIP (KDKA) — Local dignitaries took shovels in hand to officially break ground for this region’s new post exchange or PX in Moon Township.

“It’s been a long time in coming, but this is a very good day for this region and the country,” said U.S. Sen. Bob Casey, a Pennsylvania Democrat, who was there for the groundbreaking.

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The PX, which is like a deeply discounted department store, is near the new commissary, or grocery store, now under construction for the tens of thousands of military families in the tri-state region.

“Western Pennsylvania has the highest concentration of veterans in this country without having a major military base nearby,” said U.S. Rep. Keith Rothfus, a Sewickley Republican.

Even with 170,000 active and retired military in the region, it took a united non-partisan congressional effort supported by local military families to get a new PX and commissary when the Pentagon announced the closing of the old ones in Oakdale.

“We put our party labels aside and we worked with the men and women in our armed forces that serve our country,” said U.S. Rep. Mike Doyle, a Forest Hills Democrat. “There’s no politics in that. We’re of one party when it comes to the men and women in uniform.”

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Local leaders say low-priced goods are one way to help military families in difficult times.

“It’s for the families, recognizing the sacrifices that active duty, reservists, and guardsmen make,” noted U.S. Rep. Tim Murphy, an Upper St. Clair Republican.

“It’s not the highest paying job and the long hours and sacrifice that so many people make and the risks that they take for us,” he said. “It’s important that families buy some things at a discounted level.”

The new location off business I-376 near the old Greater Pitt Airport is more convenient, says one military spouse whose husband just returned from deployment.

“It just wasn’t convenient to go all the way to Oakdale from Beaver, so this will definitely be a lot more convenient,” noted Candy Martin of Beaver. “I look forward to the opening and hopefully saving some money.”

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