• After decades of serving pizza & personality, Santarpios waiter says farewell


    EAST BOSTON - For more than 30 years, a local waiter has been serving up both pizza and personality at an iconic East Boston pizzeria.

    "Lefty, two orders...can I have two lambs and then a steak a lamb and a sausage,” said Tony Costanzo, going over his order. 

    It's part of the experience that regulars have come to expect at Santarpios in East Boston

    It all started back in 1985, when Tony C got a part time job at the pizzeria.

    "I remember the start, I remember the situation....it was Hurricane Gloria September 27, 1985."

    As the years went on, it became more than just a job.

    "I got to see families grow…when I started working here I met a couple on a blind date. They've had a daughter, she graduated college,” Tony C said. 

    Things changed, but Tony C with his white note pad and black apron remained the constant. 

    "This was my first pin on my apron, from my grandmother,” he said.

    On Tuesday, Tony C hung up his apron one last time after decades of epitomizing ”Being Boston.”

    "I figured I'd be here until they'd have to walk over me to get through the front door.."

    In his Boston way, he explained why the time has come.

    "This is my foundation here...my two legs. When I first started working here, this was a one-family house...Now, it's a triple decker...The foundation can't support the triple decker anymore,” he said. 

    He said he knows it’s going to be tough.

    "Santarpios is my home away from home,” Tony C said. 

    And in that home are plenty of regulars who make Santarpios more than just a job. 

    "They've given me the inspiration to keep on going, keep on working to look forward to coming every day,” he said. 

    Making him part of the fabric of a Boston institution.

    Tony C has received official thank yous from the City of Boston and Revere, wishing him the best as he serves up his last pizza. 

    Tony says if Santarpios ever needs him to fill in, he'll be back.

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