As it often happens, a single pizzeria spawns many others. Gus Guerra was at the top of the heap. He started Buddy's in the 1930s but sold the business to Jimmy Bonacorse and Jimmy Valenti in 1953, and they in turn sold the business sixteen years later, in 1970, to Billy and Shirlee Jacobs, the parents of Robert Jacobs, the present owner of Buddy's. Gus went on to purchase the Cloverleaf Bar, which, as previously mentioned, is now owned and run by his son Jack and his daughter Marie. Shawn Randazzo spun himself off to form the Detroit Style Pizza Co after his mother, Linda Michaels, purchased the delco business from Cloverleaf.
You might also recall Louis Tourtois. As discussed previously, Louis, who came from France, worked at Buddy's for seventeen years, and later at Shield's for seven years, whereupon he started Loui's Pizza, in 1977. Loui's Pizza is now run by his son, also named Loui. Legend has it that Tourtois changed the spelling of his name from Louis to Loui because it sounded more French.
As for Shield's, it started out as a bar (Shield's Bar) in 1936 and only later started to serve pizzas. Shield's was purchased in early 1997 by two brothers, Paul and Peter Andoni. The Andoni's changed the name to Shield's Franchise Restaurants, LLC and, according to the Shield's website, at http://www.shieldspizza.com/our_story.html
, plan on expanding to new locations and offering franchises throughout Southeast Michigan and beyond.
There are many younger family members in the above businesses, so the businesses that their forbears established may be around for some time to come, using a dough recipe or some version thereof that had its origins at Buddy's.
As Paul Harvey would say, now you have the rest of the story. So, when your customers ask about "Gus", you can take the story in several different directions and speak with authority. Interesting stories with history and nostalgia help sell pizza. Hopefully, that will help you sell more Detroit style pizzas.