Thistle Family History
In 1925, at the age of eleven, Annie Bruce Leitch arrived on Ellis Island with her family from Edinburgh, Scotland. They settled in the Scottish community of Kearny, NJ.
In 1932, Annie married William McCurley and they had three children together (William, Julia and Donald). In 1963, after Annie raised her children, she bought the Thistle Fish and Chips in Kearny. Annie and William ran the shop with help from their three children for 7 years.
In 1970, Annie's daughter, Julia, and her husband, Jerry Leahy (known as "Skeeter") took over the family business. Skeeter and Julia worked hard at expanding the little Fish and Chip shop into a famous restaurant and catering business.
Skeeter and Julia were known for their generosity to the local soccer clubs, such as Thistle Football Club. Skeeter and Julia raised four children of their own (Jane, Susan, William and Anne) who worked in the business as well.
In 2009, Julia and Skeeter retired after nearly 40 years in the business, leaving the legacy to their children to carry on the family business serving up their secret batter recipe for Olde Style Fish and Chips.