Niagara Gazette

Columns

November 18, 2013

HIGGS: It's the people that make the church

(Continued)

Niagara Gazette — Angie graduated from the eighth grade at Holy Trinity and after school she helped out at her father’s grocery store after her mother died at age 51 in 1947. Since she was needed at the store after she graduated she went to Trott Vocational as this was a two-year journey instead of the three years at the Niagara Falls High School. She went on to Kelly Business School part time on Main Street then to beauty school in Buffalo to prepare for the exam. While helping her Dad at the store she did hair for a few customers.

The store was typical of the early days using a notebook to keep a record of purchases and payments. She showed me the book that the customer was obligated to bring to the store where purchases were made in both the store records and this book. They had a big brass cash register like many others. The family made and sold their own sausage which was also common in these neighborhood stores.

She told me that one day Certo Bros. came to the store to deliver soda and told her father Frank that it looked like he was about to be robbed. He noticed two people on either side of the building who looked suspicious. Frank brought out his gun and gave it to his son and they shut off the lights. The men apparently thought they were on to something so instead of coming in the store they drove off in the Certo Bros. delivery truck.

As I mentioned before, the church was their life from birth to death and Angie as well as most of the parishioners were baptized in the church, celebrated their First Communion and Confirmation there also. So, when Angie married Hank in 1953 it was at Holy Trinity Church (where else?) They actually met at a wedding reception in the third floor hall. Hank had lived on 15th Street also but later moved to Royal Avenue and he attended Lady of Lebanon Church. I looked at her wedding book; they had three groomsmen and three bridesmaids. They walked from the bride’s house in a procession to the church and were led by a friend playing the accordion. The Rev. Cyman officiated at the ceremony and the reception was held upstairs in the third floor hall where they met. They honeymooned in New York City.

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