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Monday, June 23, 2008

Harry Aleo (1919-2008)

Double-click to enlarge/Cliquer pour élargir la photo

Harry Aleo, a "colorful San Francisco native" and resident, died last Saturday of cancer at age 88.

Harry Aleo was born in the City and grew up in Noe Valley.

He fought the Battle of the Bulge during WW2, then came back and opened up his real estate shop, Twin Peaks Properties, in San Francisco's Noe Valley district in 1947, and continued doing business there until the present.

Even if you didn't know Mr. Aleo, you may have heard of his horse Lost in the Fog , sort of a modern-day Seabiscuit.

I once infuriated a few of my fellow bloggers by suggesting that Harry Aleo was a good guy, despite his politics and the fact that he was probably very wealthy. So I guess I better not say it again, uh. Let me just instead quote a comment left by a reader of the Chronicle:

"His politics made me wince every time I passed his window on 24th street, but at the same time it made me glad to see someone standing his ground..."

I couldn't agree more. And I'm pretty sure he was a good guy.

Rest in peace, Mr. Aleo.

* * * *

Additional pictures of Harry Aleo's window

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Blogger Jill, Joe & Foxy said...

That is so sad...Joe and I visited the battle of the bulge site and museum this spring.
My link to the area is my second cousin's dad fought in The Battle of the Bulge also.

1:04 AM  
Blogger AphotoAday said...

Interesting post...
I kind of wonder how many properties Mr. Aleo has sold over the years out of that little storefront...

And yeah, old people (I shouldn't talk) probably feel comfortable with their old politics...

--Hey, and good work with the sighting of the "graffiti banana" for Plug1 over at WhatImSeeing...

2:46 AM  
Blogger Tomate Farcie said...

Hello, Jill, Joe and Foxy! Thank you for the visit and comment!

Aphotoaday: I don't know the answer to that, but the Noe Valley Voice (I think)) credits him for keeping the neighborhood mostly residential with small businesses, rather than parking lots and offices.

(Glad to help the Plugs with their Banana hunt. They do a great job with that SF blog, and there is a lot to cover in the City, so I was glad I could contribue something of value to them!)

12:17 PM  
Blogger Françoise said...

Bonjour Tomate,
J'arrive chez toi via Joe, Jill and Foxy. J'ai vécu pendant très longtemps à Palo Alto et j'ai un fils qui vit à SF donc tout ce que tu racontes sur la vie là-bas m'intéresse. Je voudrais te demander la permission de reproduire ta photo de l'affiche Obama en chinois pour peut-être l'incorporer à un "post" (mot français??) futur.
Tomates farcies? J'adore et j'en fait mais seulement en saison. Il faut des tomates de jardin, les commerciales n'ont pas assez de goût, à mon avis.

7:09 AM  
Blogger Tomate Farcie said...

Françoise, bienvenue et aucun problème. Cependant l'affiche d'Obama n'est pas en Chinois, elle est juste collee sur une autre affiche avec des lettres asiatiques dessus et je ne sais pas du tout ce que c'est.

Les tomates commerciales ont souvent le gout d'eau, je trouve, surtout les plus grosses. Les toutes petites, ou celles qui viennent avec un morceau de vigne, ça va encore. Encore ici on a de la chance, il y a pas mal de vente directe sur les marches (Farmers Market)

9:00 AM  
Blogger Kelly said...

That is a lovely tribute you posted, and it made me interested enough to go and read more about him. He sounds like a colorful person, perhaps in possession of a strong will. Nothing wrong with that, and I think perhaps you have to respect somebody who stands by their principles even if you can't abide their point of view.

My daughter leaves for Europe on Saturday, and will be visiting the Battle of the Bulge site/location some time next week.

2:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Harry was a class act. If you stopped in to meet him, he would greet you like an old friend. He had wonderful stories from his years as a baseball player and was a fantastic horseman. He was generous to youth sports and the horse racing charities. If you ever spoke to him, you would know that within minutes he was a genuine kind of guy.

3:47 PM  
Blogger Tomate Farcie said...

Well said, anon!

7:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you want to learn more about Harry Aleo:


11:38 PM  

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