Frank J. Naples

World Trade Center

From Cook to Broker



Frank J. Naples was a shy man who defied the norm, but did it quietly. He knew his hard-core Republicanism had made him a bit of the black sheep in his family and in the old neighborhood in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn. It even aggravated his high school sweetheart and future wife, Heidi, but he stuck to it. The day that Rudolph W. Giuliani, then a prosecuting attorney with a reputation as a tough cookie, visited Madison High School and posed for a photograph with him sealed the deal: Mr. Giuliani became an inspiration. Frank scraped his way to success at Cantor Fitzgerald the odd way: he hired on as a cook 12 years ago and worked his way up to broker.

He and Heidi eloped to Hawaii in 1998 after an eight-year courtship that was initially frowned on by their families, who feared they had become too serious too young. ''We kind of sneaked around together during high school,'' Heidi said. He collected soccer jerseys from Italy and loved 70's disco music; on weekends, he moonlighted as a D.J. at various Brooklyn fetes. He retained his knack for cooking despite his promotion from the corporate kitchen, and liked to watch cooking shows. The couple lived in Cliffside Park, N.J., and were house- hunting and planning a family. ''We met when I was 16; I knew we were soul mates,'' Heidi said.

Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on September 21, 2001.




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