MPW.72 / 2020 The Last Stand by David Odisho
Photographer
David Odisho
Team Cliff & Vi

Story Summary

Sabella & LaTorre is among the four longstanding crab stands situated within the bustling Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco. Founded in 1926 by two Sicilian families of fishermen that immigrated to the U.S. in the 1800s, this beloved institution draws flocks of tourists and locals alike for their speciality in dungeness crab. However, the stand is facing its most daunting challenge yet: Survival. The COVID-19 pandemic has decimated legacy restaurants throughout the city. Tom Sabella and Gina LaTorre, 59 and 55, have watched their revenue plunge 70%. As a result, they have laid off 30 of their 36 employees as they cling onto the business that their families have left them. In addition, they also face the uncertainty that the younger generation of the Sabellas and LaTorres will continue the business once Tom and Gina retire. This may be their last stand.