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Thursday October 2, 2014

John Blasi: Times Square’s #WesternUnion Institution for 50 Years

Western Union

(Photo credit: swanksalot)

John Blasi joined Western Union in 1962, right out of high school, and has been with them ever since. Blasi manages the Times Square store, which has up to 1,000 customers daily. He told Crain’s New York Business, “We never close, just New Year’s Eve at 5 pm.”

In his 50-year career, Blasi has done everything from sending perfume-grams, frozen Thanksgiving turkeys and transmiting breaking news to editors via telex. On one memorable occasion Reggie Jackson hit three home runs during Game 6 of the World Series at Yankee Stadium. His busiest days came right after 9/11 when he helped West Coast companies wire funds to their stranded NY employees.

Blasi, 67, says these days he protects customers from the common scam of fake emails from friends in far off lands requesting money. He has no plans to retire. “My father worked ‘til he was 80,” he told Crain’s, “and I’m taking after him.”

Crain’s New York Business