Anthony's Steakhouse founder Tony Fucinaro dead at 82 -
Published Wednesday, July 31, 2013 at 1:00 am / Updated at 9:36 am
Anthony's Steakhouse founder Tony Fucinaro dead at 82

Anthony “Tony” Fucinaro loved meeting, greeting and serving the customers at his restaurant.

The founder of Anthony's Steakhouse in Omaha worked 16-hour days for decades and never completely retired.

Recent health problems caught up with Fucinaro, though. The 82-year-old died Saturday at Methodist Hospital, said his daughter Rita Bartlett of Omaha. The cause of death had not been determined.

A vigil service is scheduled for 7 p.m. Wednesday at St. Gerald Catholic Church, 9602 Q St. A funeral Mass will start at 10:30 a.m. Thursday at the church.

Fucinaro opened Anthony's in 1967 near 72nd and F Streets, which at the time was Omaha's western edge. It was before Interstate 80 was built nearby.

Anthony's started with a 120-seat dining room and an 80-seat lounge. Over the years it grew to accommodate nearly 1,000 people in its restaurant, lounge, banquet and party rooms, and patio.

The restaurant's aged steaks, Italian specialties and large fiberglass steer on the roof made Anthony's an Omaha institution.

Fucinaro was the son of Italian immigrants who, after Prohibition ended, owned a Ralston tavern and lived above the bar, his daughter said.

After graduating from Creighton Prep in 1949, Fucinaro farmed with his father and helped him run a family enterprise, the former Ralston Bowl, now Scorz bowling alley in downtown Ralston.

The son opened a couple of bars on his own, including the Playmaker Lounge on Leavenworth Street, which later became home to Pauli's and then the Recovery Room.

Fucinaro's honors have included being named restaurateur of the year in 1999 by the Nebraska Restaurant Association and business person of the year by the Ralston Chamber of Commerce.

He was a founding member of St. Gerald Catholic Church and a member of the Masonic Scottish Rite and a Jester at the Tangier Temple.

Survivors in addition to Bartlett include his wife of 60 years, Josephine; children Anthony Fucinaro Jr., Joseph Fucinaro and Kathryn Boulay, all of Omaha; 14 grandchildren; five great-grandchildren; brother Domenic Fucinaro of Omaha; and sister Mary Ferdani of Lakewood, Colo.

Contact the writer: Susan Szalewski    |   402-444-1304

Susan is a part-time cops and breaking news reporter for

Omaha police investigate two Sunday shootings
Sole big donor to Beau McCoy says he expects nothing in return
Firefighters battle brush fire near Fontenelle Forest
Sioux City riverboat casino prepares to close, still hoping to be saved
Omaha high schoolers to help canvass for Heartland 2050
Mizzou alumni aim to attract veterinary students to Henry Doorly Zoo
Grant ensures that Sioux City can start building children's museum
Party looks to 'nudge' women into public office in Iowa
For birthday, Brownell-Talbot student opts to give, not get
Two taken to hospital after fire at Benson home
Grace: Pipe organ concert a tribute to couple's enduring love
Omaha-area jails and ERs new front line in battling mental illness
Convicted killer Nikko Jenkins might await his sentence in prison
Kelly: 70 years after a deadly D-Day rehearsal, Omahan, WWII vet will return to Europe
Civil rights hearing to consider voting policies in Midwest
17 senators in Nebraska Legislature hit their (term) limits
It's a pursuit of pastel at Spring Lake Park's Easter egg hunt
Financial picture improving for city-owned Mid-America Center
No injuries after fire at midtown's old Mercer Mansion
29-year-old Omahan arrested for 22nd time in Lincoln
Police: Slaying of woman in Ralston apartment likely over drugs
Explosion near 29th, Woolworth damages vehicles
Omaha police arrest man, 19, accused in March shooting
Earth gets its day in the sun at Elmwood Park
Beau McCoy strikes Obama doll in TV ad; Democrats are not happy
< >
Kelly: 70 years after a deadly D-Day rehearsal, Omahan, WWII vet will return to Europe
A World War II veteran from Omaha will return this week to Europe to commemorate a tragedy in the run-up to D-Day.
Dickson’s Week in Review, April 13-19
On Twitter some guy tweeted that the spring game isn’t taken as seriously as a regular-season contest. What was your first clue? When the head coach entered waving a cat aloft?
Kelly: A California university president returns to her Nebraska roots on Ivy Day
The main speaker at today's Ivy Day celebration at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln is a college president who grew up roping calves and earned her Ph.D. at the prestigious Oxford University in England.
Breaking Brad: Stuck in a claw machine? You get no Easter candy
I know of one kid in Lincoln who will be receiving a lump of coal from the Easter Bunny, just as soon as he's extricated from that bowling alley claw machine.
Breaking Brad: Mountain lion season's over, but the bunny's fair game!
Thursday was the last day of a Nebraska Legislature session. Before leaving town, legislators passed a bill to hold a lottery to hunt the Easter Bunny.
Deadline Deal thumbnail
The Jaipur in Rockbrook Village
Half Off Fine Indian Cuisine & Drinks! $15 for Dinner, or $7 for Lunch
Buy Now
< >
Omaha World-Herald Contests
Enter for a chance to win great prizes.
OWH Store: Buy photos, books and articles
Buy photos, books and articles
Travel Snaps Photo
Going on Vacation? Take the Omaha World-Herald with you and you could the next Travel Snaps winner.
Click here to donate to Goodfellows
The 2011 Goodfellows fund drive provided holiday meals to nearly 5,000 families and their children, and raised more than $500,000 to help families in crisis year round.
Want to get World-Herald stories sent directly to your home or work computer? Sign up for's News Alerts and you will receive e-mails with the day's top stories.
Can't find what you need? Click here for site map »