Editor’s note: Late last year, the Rubatino family sold its Everett trash collection business to a trio of local buyers. The sale ended more than a century of ownership for the Everett family. A story about the sale of the Rubatino Refuse Removal Co. appeared in The Daily Herald on April 3. Now, Kathy Rubatino Foster and Tim Rubatino offer additional information about family members who worked for the firm during its 114-year span.
By Kathy Rubatino Foster and Tim Rubatino / Herald Forum
Our father and mother were Tom and Joyce Rubatino. Tom, who was secretary-treasurer, worked for the company for 61 years.
We worked for the company and two affiliates for many years.
Joyce Rubatino passed away in 2005. Tom Rubatino passed away in 2010.
In 1907, Angelo Rubatino and three others started a hauling company. After a few years, the three partners left.
Angelo’s sons, Henry Rubatino and Fred Rubatino, joined in 1908 and 1918, respectively.
In the 1920s, the company, which had relied on horses and carts, purchased its first motorized trucks. The last horse and cart was replaced in 1937.
In 1950 Fred’s son, Tom Rubatino, joined the company, followed by Henry’s son, Ed Rubatino, in 1957. Ed, 91, who served as the company’s president through December, spent 64 years on the job.
After Fred Rubatino died in 1951, his wife, Mary, and son, Tom, became co-owners in half the company.
In the late 1960s, Tom and Ed Rubatino became equal partners in the business.
The company acquired its current name, Rubatino Refuse Removal, in 1967 after doing business as City Scavenger.
Tom Rubatino’s children — Ron, Tim and Kathy Rubatino Foster — worked for the company for decades. A third son, Fred, worked at the firm for about 10 years.
Ron’s son, Andrew Rubatino, worked for the firm for 13 years. Rubatino Foster’s son, Bryan Foster, worked there for nearly three years.
Ron Rubatino, who died in October, worked for the family business for 45 years.
Fred used to tell his son, Tom, (our father) about trying to teach grandpa Angelo how to drive the company’s first truck, which was a hard-rubber-tired, chain-driven Mack truck.
Grandpa started the truck, advanced the spark and headed toward a telephone pole. Dad yelled for him to turn or stop.
Grandpa shouted, “Whoa! Whoa!” and hit the pole, but no major damage was caused.
Grandpa jumped out of the truck and said he wouldn’t ever get in it again; the horses were better. They knew the route and you didn’t need to keep getting off and on the seat.
Our father, Tom Rubatino, was a very likable and hard-working person. He always enjoyed helping and supporting family, friends and the community.
Tom belonged to many community service groups, including Elks Club, Eagles and Sertoma, which helps people with hearing loss.
The Rubatino family supports the Providence General Children’s Association and the Kidney Auxiliary of Puget Sound. Joyce Rubatino was instrumental in the formation of Kidney Auxiliary of Puget Sound in 1981. Kathy Rubatino Foster continues to volunteer for the Children’s association and Kidney auxiliary.
Working for the company was an unforgettable time in our life. Customer service was important and still is to our family.