Building a Legacy
At the age of 21, Tony Bucio came to this country from Mexico to work with his uncle repairing cars. An only child raised since age one by a single mom, he wanted to find a good job and help out his hard-working mother.
In 1996, he founded his own business, Top Finish Collision, which specializes in repairing cars that have been involved in accidents. Framework, paint, mechanical or suspension problems? Tony and Top Frame Collision provide the solutions. His wife Leticia, who graduated from Cal State Fullerton with a degree in business administration, plays an important role in the business.
But success did not come without hard work and the assistance of Victor Allaman, whom Tony describes as a tremendous force in the Santa Ana community. Victor owned the property on which Tony established his business, and after several years and considerable support from Victor, Tony was able to purchase the land.
He recalls asking Victor if there was anything he could do to show his appreciation, Victor responded by inviting Tony to attend a meeting the following Wednesday morning. Tony was very happy to comply, and off he went to his first Kiwanis meeting. He was surprised to see Victor there with a check for Tony’s first year of membership dues. “What you can do for me,” explained Victor, “is help out our community through this wonderful group.”
An enthusiastic Kiwanis member since that time, Tony today serves on its board and is a member of the scholarship committee. “Kiwanis gives out $50,000 each year in scholarships, many to Santa Ana College,” he points out. “More than 90 percent of my business comes from the Santa Ana community, and I am a firm believer in giving back every day to the people that give so much to me. At Kiwanis we believe that in helping our next generation, we build better communities that benefit everyone, and Santa Ana College has an excellent understanding of students’ needs. Victor Allaman left a great legacy when he passed away a couple of years ago, and I am honored to say that I am part of it.”
Tony resides with his wife and three young daughters in Santa Ana, “a city we love,” he says. He dreams of becoming an instructor in an ROP or vocational program. “There is always a shortage of good people to hire in the automobile repair business, and it is a great career alternative for young people to consider.” And so Victor’s legacy of building better communities continues.
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