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Remembering Danny Aiello

December 18, 2019

I was fortunate to meet the tremendous performer, Danny Aiello, who died days back at the age of 86, on a few occasions.

He was personable and it was always nice to talk with him.

The work he did was astounding (I recall seeing and talking with him and former heavyweight boxing champion, Larry Holmes, after Danny’s moving performance in “Knockout,” forty years ago), my recollections also include “Radio Days” and a benefit not so long ago, where he spoke from his heart, about the great joy he experienced, receiving a pair of boxing gloves at an early age. It was truly moving.

On the day of the New York Yankees title parade in 1999, I had the pleasure of interviewing him at another event.

He liked my memory, as I recalled myriad tidbits and I said that, as with a character in one of his movies, I had a penchant for retaining “useless information.”

Mr. Aiello asked in which movie his character stated that? I did not know the answer. We both laughed, as he said it was “29th Street.”

Later in the evening, introducing an oldies music show, he predicted a “Subway Series”/ Yankees vs Mets in 2000, which came to fruition.

There’s some “useless information,” regarding a man the polar opposite, one who did so much and did so warmly, in his life.

 

Danny Aiello.jpg

Danny Aiello, pictured above.

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