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Ralph Calcaterra, rest in peace
June 23, 2011 - Burt Angeli
Ralph Calcaterra, mentioned often in my Las Vegas columns, passed away in the San Francisco area last week.
The Dickinson County native made it big in real estate, prospering with property in California and Nevada. Ralph owned Las Vegas’ Holiday Motel, a regular stop to visit him along with his trusted associates Yvonne and Mel.
We often referred to Mel as Ralph’s “right-hand man” in Las Vegas. He worked for “Mr. C” for 23 years.
“You could not have a better boss or friend in life,” said Mel, also known as the “sports authority.”
“Guests staying at his motels would never know he was the owner because he would be laughing and joking with all of us, from the maids to the desk clerks to the managers,” Mel recalled. “He was one of us and always treated us like an equal. Even though he could've acted like most big shots do, that wasn't ‘Mr. C’ and that's why we all loved him and looked up to him.”
It was fitting that Ralph and Albert Carollo shared the same credo: “It’s nice to be important but it’s more important to be nice.” They were dear friends, and a laugh-a-minute when together.
We had the pleasure of dining with Ralph, Albert and D. Roy Carollo at a Las Vegas restaurant. Ralph and Albert joked from the time they sat down to when they decided who didn’t want the check.
Ralph, rest in peace ...
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