Cranston barber, 90, to retire after 68 years

CRANSTON, R.I. (AP/WPRI) — A 90-year-old Rhode Island barber is putting down his clippers after 68 years.

Tony Manzi has cut five generations of hair at Manzi’s Barber Shop in Cranston. Eyewitness News has learned the man known locally as Tony the Barber is set to retire Thursday.

“I may never be able to get my hair cut again, I don’t know who to go to,” said Ernie Rheaume.

Tony the Barber has been cutting hair since 1947. He said he learned the trade working in his father’s barber shop. His job was handing out towels to men getting a shave when he was just seven years old.

Now, after nearly seven decades of cutting hair, Manzi will close his shop for the final time on Thursday.

“It’s happy and it’s sad because I hate to be leaving,” Manzi told Eyewitness News on Tuesday.

On one of his last days, loyal customers streamed through the doors of Manzi’s Haven Avenue shop, wishing him well and hoping for one last trim.

Manzi has been cutting Edmund Oberg’s hair for 22 years.

When asked what makes Manzi a great barber, Oberg said, “personality, besides a good haircut.”

Manzi said he looks forward to spending time with his family and friends, visiting the beach and hitting the dancefloor.

But he said he’ll miss days cutting hair in his shop.

“It keeps me going. I enjoy it,” he said.

According to Manzi, a younger barber will take over the business. He said he hopes to see it flourish.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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