Montour Oil Service Co. Donates Funds for Penn College HVAC Scholarships

Published 02.21.2000


Students in the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology programs at Pennsylvania College of Technology will be eligible for scholarship funds donated recently by Montour Oil Service Co., Montoursville.

The Montour Oil Service Co. D. Richard Thomas Memorial Scholarship Fund, which is named for the late vice president and general manager of the firm, will provide an initial gift of $10,000 toward a corporate commitment of $20,000. The scholarship will be awarded annually at Penn College.

First preference will be given to students enrolled in the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning Technology bachelor's or associate's degree programs. As similar programs in HVAC emphasis are added, they will be included in the selection preference.

Other criteria for the scholarships are:

  • Students must have applied, and be eligible for, financial aid
  • First-time awardees must have a minimum cumulative grade-point average of 2.0 or above, or a high school average of "C" or better
  • Students must be enrolled full time
  • Preference will be given to continuing students in subsequent years if a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.5 is maintained

Thomas, who attended Williamsport Technical Institute, was employed by Montour Oil Service Co. from 1964 until his death in 1991. Beginning as a burner service technician, he eventually became a sales engineer, sales and service manager and finally, in 1973, vice president and general manager. He held several patents for various heating and oil-burner inventions.

He was founder and former owner of the former Nautilus Raquetball & Fitness Center in Williamsport, and was part-owner of Montgomery Plumbing Supply, Montoursville. In 1996, Thomas was inducted posthumously into the West Branch Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame for baseball and racquetball. He was a Little League Baseball coach in Montoursville from 1969-74 and an American Legion Baseball coach from 1975-79.

Montour Oil Service Co. was founded in 1925 as Montour Auto Service Co. by Joseph A. Heim, John H. Siegel, Andrew W. Siegel and Harry M. King. In 1926, the company became a petroleum distributor for gasoline, fuel oil and motor oil. Montour was a distributor for Tidewater Petroleum from 1926-64, when then-president Walter J. Heim sold the business to Sun Oil Co.

Today, the company operates throughout most of Northeast and Central Pennsylvania, supplying petroleum products and heating and air-conditioning services to 60,000 homes and businesses. It employs a total of 300 people at its main office in Montoursville and seven other locations.