On a day where the worst snow storms swept central Ohio in February of 1978, we moved with my wife from Columbus Ohio to Baton Rouge Louisiana, to start my restaurant career with Sicily’s Pizza. Sicily’s Pizza, a local Pizza store owned by two partners had recently opened their second location and they had offered me the job as Manager of the new store. The next sixteen years I was going to live one third of my young life in this city where our two daughters were born, where we bought our first house and built the second one.
Sicily’s Pizza was going to grow to eighteen units in Louisiana and Mississippi with sales totalling over 9 million dollars, when pizzas were sold for a mere 5 bucs. Sicily’s The Pizza Place, with it’s new name and new concept of Buffet Italiano which included dessert pizzas, seafood pizzas, vegetarian lasagnes, eggplant casseroles and even a taco bar, soon started franchising in Turkey . Six units were opened in Istanbul and Ankara. In addition to delivery and to go service an alacarte menu was offered to guests with wine and beer.
The first ten years I was the operation guy overseeing all eighteen units as the V.P. of Operations, running the stores with three district managers. When in the early 1990 ies two partners started conflicting and one bought the other one out, I acquired the Gonzales location as a franchisee and ran it for five years. All Sicily's stores were eventually sold to a new owner and when Walmart, the anchor store in our shopping center moved out to a new location, my sales and profits hit the bottom. I consolidated my losses and transferred the restaurant to the new owner and moved out.
I had lived a comfortable life with my wife and raised two beautiful daughters working for Sicily’s, but now after 16 years I had nothing left in savings and had to start all over again at the age of forty five. We moved back to Columbus and I started back again from the bottom as a Manager with Golden Corral Restaurants. Here I was going to get back on my feet again and run a very successful operation the next sixteen years as the Operating Partner of the Dublin- Granville store. Golden Corral turned out very generous to me and my family where I comfortably retired in 2011 .