Tuesday, June 11, 2013

A Century of Lombardi


Vincent Thomas Lombardi was born in Brooklyn to Enrico "Harry" Lombardi (1889-1971) and Matilda "Mattie" Izzo (1891-1972) on June 11, 1913 — one hundred years ago today. Harry's mother and father, Vincenzo and Michelina emigrated from Salerno, Italy. Mattie's father and mother, Anthony and Loretta, emigrated from an area several miles east of Salerno. Harry had three siblings and Matilda had twelve siblings. Vincent would be the oldest of five children: Madeleine, Harold, Claire, and Joe. The entire Lombardi and Izzo clan settled in Sheepshead Bay, New York.

Matilda's father, Anthony, opened up a barber shop in Sheepshead Bay prior to the turn of the century. At about the time of Lombardi's birth, Harry, and his brother, Eddie, opened a butcher shop in the Meatpacking District. Throughout the Great Depression, Harry's shop did well and his family prospered. Lombardi grew up in an ethnically diverse, middle-class neighborhood.

St Mark's Church attendance was mandatory for the Lombardis on Sundays. Mass would be followed with an equally compulsory few hours of dinner with friends, extended family members, and local clergy. Vincent was an altar boy at St. Mark's Catholic Church. Outside of their local neighborhood, the Lombardi children were subject to the rampant racism that existed at the time against Italian immigrants. As a child, Lombardi helped his father at his meat cutting business, but grew to hate it. At the age of 12 he started playing in an uncoached but organized football league in Sheepshead Bay. And the rest is history.

— Source: Wikipedia

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

THANK YOU!
YOU ARE A CLASS ACT!