Comaro Shopping Center



Business Owner Shares His Secret for Success

“School is just a stepping stone,” says Monroe businessman Roy Nealon. “I worked hard.”  

Roy Nealon, owner of the Comaro Shopping Center came to Monroe from Bridgeport by way of New Jersey and Manhattan Island at the age of seven with his family.  He learned early the rewards of hard work. By 12, he had a paper route. In high school he worked at Liquori’s Drive-in, (now called Bill’s).

After graduation he joined the United States Air Force and was trained in Administration. After a year he was stationed at Plattsburg, NY. By day he was an Air Force airman, by night and weekends he was a college student earning his Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering.

“Professors were flown in from Southern University in Illinois every weekend to teach us,” he explained.  The Air Force paid for 75% of his college education.

After discharge he secured an engineering job with a Norwalk firm, but before he even started he was notified of a hiring freeze. He grabbed a part-time job at the old Cumberland Farms (now the Comaro Mini-Mart). That’s when he met Bob Huggler, owner of the neighboring GlenRo Spirit Shoppe, also a tenant of the shopping center. Huggler saw his work ethic and offered him a “part-time” job. From the moment he accepted, Huggler became his mentor teaching him the business. And that part-time job turned out to be 44 hours a week. (Something they always joked about.)

“He taught me everything I know,” said Roy. “I discovered I really liked the business.” And keeping true to his philosophy that “you get out of life what you put into it” he went back to school studying wines and brew. By the time his mentor wanted to retire in 1992, Roy had become the wine guru of Monroe with in-depth knowledge of the thousands of bottles of wine and beer on the shelves, and he was ready to take over. He bought the GlenRo Spirit Shoppe. Nine years later Roy bought the entire shopping center.

Roy sold the liquor business in 2010 to Monroe’s Larry Cass (who loves to tend the garden along Rte. 111 under their sign) and now concentrates on being a good landlord.  He has never had to look for a tenant.

“I don’t kill my tenants with high rent. And… I sweep the parking lot,” he said laughing. “Who does that?”  Not many. It’s his good work ethic kicking in – the most important ingredient in the recipe for success. Roy and his family live in Monroe.

Current Tenants
111 Elite Firearms
Comaro Mini-Mart
GlenRo Spirit Shoppe


Categories: Shopping Centers

487 Monroe Turnpike
Monroe, CT 06468