Joe Franquinha can’t quite put a date to the day Tony Luca started to work for his dad, Manny, at Crest Hardware (558 Metropolitan Avenue) in the 1970s. “I’d be running around the store as a kid, and he was there. He’s always been such a constant in my life and North Brooklyn’s life. You know where to find him: at the back of the counter. You know what time he gets in; you know that he leaves at 6 every day; you know what time he takes his lunch. Anthony’s his name, but everyone calls him Tony,” Said Joe Franquinha, owner of Crest Hardware.
On November 9 a celebration to honor Tony’s 50 years at Crest Hardware was held at Crest Hardware. Friends and neighbors came to toast his commitment and service to the community.
Efrain Torres is one of Tony’s friends. They first met when they both worked together in the 1970s. He remembered, “Tony and I go way back. We worked at the same place, where the Apple Store is now, S & S Corrugated Paper Machinery. He was known as Tony DoAll, because he worked the DoAll saw.” When Tony left S & S he went to work for Crest. Torres went on to tell how Tony knows the history of Williamsburg. For instance, Crest’s Urban Garden Center is on what used to be the main road in Williamsburg, instead of Metropolitan Avenue. “I know he’s not going to retire. He’s going to keep on going,” Torres said.
Cathy Franquinha, wife to Crest’s original owner Manny and mother to Joe, said to Tony, “I can’t thank you enough for the way you loved and respected Manuel. He always talked so highly of you and so does the entire community. It’s well-deserved.”