Reliable, durable and highly versatile WA200
In the late 1800s and early 1900s, millions of Italians immigrated to the U.S. seeking a better life. Peter Sammarco was one of them. He settled in Westchester County and began his career by selling topsoil, primarily to other immigrant landscapers. In 1929, the same year the stock market crashed and the Great Depression began, He started Sammarco Garden Center, which later became Sammarco Stone & Supply, Inc. in New Rochelle. Peter ran the company for 56 years, until his grandson Frank Miceli took over in 1985.
Today, Sammarco Stone & Supply employs 19 people and handles a wide range of products for landscape and masonry contractors in lower Westchester County, the lower Hudson Valley and southwestern Connecticut. The company is the largest supplier of quarried bluestone in the region and carries nearly every additional natural stone product as well. Sammarco Stone also sells most masonry products and supplies, all of which are available for pickup or delivery.
Sammarco-supplied stone and other materials have been used in thousands of homes, parks, businesses and institutions throughout the greater New York City area, including New York and Brooklyn Botanical Gardens, Central Park Conservancy and Yankee Stadium (the original Monument Park).
“We’re very proud of our products and pleased that they have been used by contractors in some of the most beautiful and noteworthy venues in New York,” said Mary Ann Miceli, Frank’s mother and Peter Sammarco’s daughter. “I came to work for my dad after graduating from high school at age 16 and did all the office work. I was a good Italian daughter and did everything my father asked – almost. The only thing I refused was when he wanted to teach me to load trucks so I could take care of customers in the yard when he was out making deliveries. I put my foot down about that. It was the 1950s, and ladies didn’t do that type of thing back then.”
Cathlin Boncardo joined the company in 2002 to assist Mary Ann in the daily operations because the company had grown significantly. Boncardo cites quality products, top-notch service and a caring attitude as reasons why the company is still around after almost 90 years.
“We care about our customers,” said Boncardo. “We know them by name, and we try to treat everybody with a personal touch. We truly want them to be happy with the products and service they get from Sammarco Stone.”
Both women credit Sammarco Stone & Supply employees for the company’s success and longevity.
“We have a lot of respect for our employees,” said Mary Ann. “My father was from Italy, and he told me stories of how he was mistreated. Because of that, we try to help all of our workers rather than take advantage of them. I believe both my father and son have tried to create a welcoming, respectful, family-like atmosphere at Sammarco Stone.”
“Frank is a very hands-on President; our Vice President of Operations, Peter Decina, and Purchasing Manager, Frank Mezzaucella, are very knowledgeable and helpful. Master Fabricator Juan Lopez, who custom-cuts all the specialty stone, is an absolute artist,” said Boncardo. “All of our employees are good, hard-working, loyal people. We have very little turnover. It’s a team where everybody is virtually interchangeable, and we all pitch in wherever we’re needed.”
Komatsu WA200 from Ehrbar
To run the yard, Sammarco Stone & Supply recently purchased a Komatsu WA200 wheel loader from Edward Ehrbar and Sales Rep Trevor Berger.
“The workload warranted a new loader and Komatsu has a great reputation,” said Boncardo. “We’ve found the WA200 to be very reliable, durable and highly versatile. We like being able to change out buckets to do very different things, like snow removal, which we do in the winter.
“In addition, we wanted to know we’d get good support from the dealer, and Ehrbar is known for support,” she added. “The Komatsu CARE package, where Komatsu and Ehrbar provide complimentary scheduled service intervals for three years or 2,000 hours, is also a significant benefit for us. We try to take great care of our equipment to make it last, so to have trained technicians come to our place to do the work and inspect the machine on a regular basis – that’s a big deal.”
Mary Ann, who’s been involved with the business since the 1950s and still comes in to the office a couple of days a week, says she thinks that Sammarco Stone & Supply’s future is bright.
“Frank has three daughters, and I think there’s a chance at least one of them might choose to come to work here, just like I did. It’s a very rewarding job. Helping customers and working with agreeable people – it’s a family atmosphere. A lot of people here are related by blood or marriage, and even those who aren’t, are treated like family. We’re not all Italian, but we’re all paisans (friends), and that makes coming to work enjoyable.”