Noah Cha Frank Franco cuts a customer’s hair in the LaFortune barbershop.“I grew up in a barbershop, my dad was a barber,” Franco said. “He made me go to barber school and then he wouldn’t hire me. He actually wanted me to use barbering to go through college, to pay my own way through college.” After attending barber school in Akron, Ohio, Franco enrolled in Kent State University. Shortly after graduating college, he was drafted into the army during the Vietnam War. He was actually drafted twice, once while he was still in school and once barely a month after his college graduation. “The first time they drafted me, I was in Cleveland at the center and I kept telling them, you can’t draft me because for 12 more hours, I’m a bonafide student, no matter what I’m taking,” Franco said. “So they sent me home. As soon as I graduated, wasn’t a month when I saw the mailman deliver something, and I saw him give it a second look, so I knew what it was. I went back up and they knew who I was.”Franco served from 1967-1969 at the Overseas Replacement Center in Fort Lewis, Washington. He got married when he realized that he was not going to be deployed overseas, and after he got out of the army in 1969, began to work in business. He moved to South Bend from his home in Ohio to work for a fluid controls manufacturing company. “I came to town to work for South Bend Controls,” Franco said. “I worked for a couple of companies, did some budgets for them but I got tired of working for companies and doing things for them.”Franco’s coming to Notre Dame is a story he says most people would not believe. “I was a little bit worried, out of work and some people won’t believe this but they say ND calls you,” Franco said. “In the middle of the night, I heard a voice telling me to get [myself] up here. So I was up here by 9:00 the next morning with that idea, only to learn that they already had a barbershop.”That barbershop was run by Joe D’Angelo, known among students as “ROTC Joe.” “The gentleman told me to come down and meet Joe D’Angelo, or ROTC Joe,” Franco said. “Joe and I got on pretty well, and he told me a secret nobody knew yet: he was retiring. And no one around the school knew that. That was 26 years ago and I’ve been here ever since.”After more than two and a half decades of cutting hair in LaFortune, and even more before that, Franco has his practice down to a science.“My routine is just to come, get ready and cut hair,” Franco said.Franco said he sees anywhere from 20 to 25 customers each day — mostly students, but a mix of faculty, clergy and other administration as well. “The haircut styles haven’t changed,” he said. “Not much has changed in the last 26 years. My pricing has changed, it’s gone up, but not a lot has changed.”Though not much about his haircuts has changed, the Notre Dame campus has changed a great deal in the past few decades. “The footprint has gotten much bigger,” Franco said. “If you think of a size 8 shoe [back then], I think it’s about a size fifteen now.” When asked what his favorite thing about cutting hair in LaFortune is, Franco said over everything else, he likes the variety of his job.“The atmosphere keeps me young, because I think I’m older than I look,” he said. “My wife will tell you I’m older than I act.”Tags: barber, barbershop, frank franco, LaFortune Student Center Nestled in the corner of the basement of LaFortune Student Center, amidst the wafting scents of Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, sits the LaFortune barbershop. The small room is plastered in pictures of everything from the Golden Dome to motorcycles. On a table sits a red tin full of Hershey’s kisses for the women who pass through the shop. The iconic shop is home to barber Frank Franco, 76, who has been cutting hair at the University for 26 years.The art of cutting hair is a family business for Franco — his father was a barber as well in Franco’s hometown of Alliance, Ohio.
Teen sensation, Oyinlomio Quadre, clinched her first Central Bank of Nigeria Open singles crown on Saturday with a resounding 6-0, 6-1 win over Christy Agugbom while defending champions Sylvester Emmanuel retained his men’s singles title with a 6-4, 6-4 triumph over Abdulmumin Babalola.A packed final at the Centre Court of the National Tennis Centre, Abuja saw the Morocco-based Quadre dominated the clash to announce her arrival at the top of domestic stage. Quadre, one of the best talents in junior tennis in Africa in recent times, said she would work harder knowing that all eyes are on her.“I’m very happy to win my first CBN title; this is a dream comes true for me because CBN is one tournament that every Nigerian player cherished,” said the 16-year-old In the men’s singles final, Babalola’s chase for a record seventh CBN Open title was dashed by Emmanuel who has now cemented his position as the undisputed top player in Nigeria. The champions each pocketed N700, 000 while the finalists got N500, 000.Quadre also paired Mary Tenu-Michael to beat the duo of Agugbom and Blessing Samuel to clinch the women’s doubles with Babalola and Lawal Shehu clinching the men’s doubles at the expense of Joseph Imeh and Christian Paul.Alex Adewale and Kafayat Omisore both clinched the men’s and ladies’ singles in the wheelchair tennis with Adewale clinching his sixth-successive title by beating Wasiu Yusuf 6-1, 6-0 while Omisore edged Chituru Nwazuru 4-6, 6-4, 11-9.CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele, said at the prize presentation ceremony that the apex bank is totally committed to the sponsorship of the tournament.Emefiele, who was represented by CBN Head of Corporate Communications, Isaac Okorafor, said the championship has served as the springboard to limelight for Nigerian tennis players and CBN is determined to take it to a higher level.NTF President, Ifedayo Akindoju, pointed that there has been tremendous players’ improvement pointing that the emergence Quadre, who defeated a hosts of experienced players on her way to the title, is an attestation to the impact that the tournament has made over the years.He commended the CBN for its unremitting support for Tennis in Nigeria pointing to their sponsorship of the CBN Juniors which is in its 16th year.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Barakat Oyinlomo Quadre