Letters to Cosmo: Community honors ice cream man
For decades, an ice cream truck driver brought countless smiles to children's faces. Now those grown children and others are showing their appreciation.
Cosmo Commisso, 98, is a Levittown legend. He emigrated from Italy at 17, served in World War II and later spent about 50 years driving an ice cream truck on the streets of Levittown.
"We didn't really have a sense of how popular he was, as kids growing up," says Bob Commisso, Cosmo's son. "It was only afterwards, when we'd be walking in a store someplace and a person would come up and say, 'Hi, Coz. Remember me?'"
The senior Commisso started his ice cream route in the 1950s and ended in the early 2000s.
"He was amazing," says former ice cream truck customer Leonora Murray. "He was like a family member."
Commisso's memory is no longer what it once was, according to his son. Commisso's family uses memory books to help him remember.
"It's emotional sometimes," says Bob. "I don't really think he understands the impact that he had -- and he had a great impact on people."
So much so that two people started a Facebook campaign called "Letters to Cosmo." Thank you notes and cards are now pouring in.