In honor of Father’s Day this month, I want to tell you a story about Guido Cornacchione. Barely surviving on the farm in Fossalto, ltaly, where he was raised, Guido moved to England in 1961 to find work—he met the Beatles at a bar across the street from the café in Brighton that hired him as a chef. Years later he remembered with some amusement that Paul told him, “We’re called the Beatles but we’re thinking of changing our name.” In 1963 he visited relatives in Akron, OH, who assured him that he’d have no trouble finding work in one of the tire factories there, but after taking one look at the place he’d be expected to spend long hours every day, he took the advice of a friend and went to beauty school. So he could be close to his four children as they were growing up, he put an addition on his house and opened a salon where he cut hair while dispensing life lessons to anyone who would listen. “My father is a wise, honorable and loving person with strong principals and integrity,” says his oldest son, Emilio, who followed in his father’s footsteps and became a hairdresser. “I always remember him saying, in this business you meet nice people, have fun and will always be able to take care of your family because everybody wants their hair to look good when they go out.” Last year Guido’s wife, Vincenza—the couple has been married for 51 years—had open-heart surgery at the Cleveland Clinic’s Miller Family Heart & Vascular Institute. The whole family accompanied Vincenza to the clinic the day before her surgery, but it was Emilio who recognized the names on the front of the building: [Matrix founders] Arnold and Sydell Miller Family Pavilion. “Dad, he was a hairdresser,” he told his father with pride because “our profession hasn’t always been that highly regarded.” Now he wonders if the surgeons who work in that building have any idea that a hairdresser paid for it. Maybe if he sends them a copy of this magazine, they will.
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