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Born in absolute squalor 24 February 1931in Pozzuoli, Italy a small town outside of soon to be war torn Naples (same town as Sophia Loren) She had a twin sister Antoinette a brother Silvio and sister Eleanor. Sadly they never knew their father and their mom passed soon after they were born. Eleanor was killed during a bombing raid and Silvio died of a brain hemorrhage, leaving Lucia and Antoinette to live with distant cousins.
Mom would often speak of how terrible life was back then, the bombings the cruelty of the Nazis and how they would seek out partisans, looking for food
at times they would go through the garbage of restaurants and hotels picking out vegetable peels to make a broth, sometimes being lucky enough to have a pigeon to throw in.
They made it through that nightmare and ended up in America. Lucy married Frank had 4 children Umberto, Tina, Frankie and Michael. They owned several pizza places around the 5 towns eventually settling in at Frank and Lucy’s in East Rockaway. She was the lifeline of that place always there preparing the food keeping books constantly arguing with the suppliers (and each other).
Together with Antoinette they were quite a team, cooking cleaning, bickering, always leaving trays of cookies in their wake. They were always competing with each other. Who made better sauce, who made better meatballs, cookies etc. And we were the fortunate ones to be judges in the competition. They would do anything for anyone at the drop a hat.
Lucy ruled with an iron fist. You didn’t want to be on her radar especially if the wooden spoon were around. When you heard the junk draw rattle you knew it was time to get out of dodge. Sometimes we would get lucky and a ladle would get stuck, jamming up the drawer that would give us an extra 2 to 3 seconds head start.
Holidays were always special, especially Christmas Eve. All the fish, struffoli and good company.
Always ready for a laugh she was a constant prankster sewing up the sleeves of a sweater or trying to pull your shorts down.
No matter who you were or how long she knew you even if you just met her when it was time to say goodbye she always said the same thing “ I lova you”. So if you saw her in the passed week, month, year I can guarantee you her last words to you were “I lova you so much”
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Lucia Reo, please visit our floral store.