Vincent Montanaro was born and lived his early life in the Manderaggio (Mandraġġ) area.
The Vincent residence is named after this gentle giant in memory of his life and hard work.
Vincent was born in 1934, and if he were to come back to the house he was brought up in he would be amazed at the comfort, the bold designs, the beauty in his home of old.
Back in time, Vincent became the main breadwinner of the family at the tender age of 11 when his father died. Off he went to work in kitchens and bars in Strait Street, The Gut, which was then the centre for music, cabaret, sailors, soldiers and great wicked times.
The place was not for the faint-hearted and Vincent, who grew into a strapping six-footer, became a doorman and bouncer at these same clubs. Subsequently he joined the police force but, even though he was a top performer, he had to leave as he could not stomach having to lock people away, especially when the crimes were petty and committed to feed a starving family.It was a time when people did not have easy access to education, jobs or food, so the majority of criminals were not hardened ones.
Vincent, even if far from rich, loved helping people materially and was very well-loved in Valletta. At the age of 23 he joined the Merchant Navy as a chef then settled in the UK when he was 28.
He married Myrtle, had two sons, worked in and opened various catering establishments and lived happily in England till he died in 2005.
The building that carries his name has changed immensely, as have Valletta, its people and its economy. But at The Vincent and in all the houses and streets around the area one thing lives on – the memory of the man and his human warmth.