Wednesday, May 6, 2015

"Sinatra Pal" Jilly Rizzo 1992 Desert Cemetery

Ermenigildo "Jilly" Rizzo (May 6, 1917 – May 6, 1992) was an American restaurateur and entertainer. 


As a young man, Rizzo worked with his father delivering Italian ice to cafes. Rizzo opened Jilly's Saloon, a lounge on West 49th Street, then moved to 256 West 52nd Street at the intersection with Eighth Avenue in Manhattan. Jilly's Saloon was a popular celebrity hangout in the 1960s. Rizzo's long-time friend Frank Sinatra frequented the lounge. Rizzo later became one of Sinatra's chief aides. Rizzo was also a frequent guest on Rowan and Martin's Laugh-In, where he would recite one liners in his monotone New York accent. In 1990, Rizzo and five other men were convicted of fraud in relation to an $8 million loan scheme. He was given 1,000 hours of community service.


On May 6, 1992, his 75th birthday, Rizzo was killed when his car was hit by a drunk driver in Rancho Mirage, California. He was survived by a daughter, two sons and two grandchildren. He is buried in Desert Memorial Park in Cathedral City, California.

No comments:

Post a Comment