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An appreciation: Ciccone was ‘measured, polite, amusing’

Eric Ciccone was 56.

Eric Ciccone was remembered Monday as a “good guy,” who did much during his life to improve the Lynn business community.

Ciccone, 56, co-owner of Beden’s Hardware on Munroe Street in Lynn, died over the weekend of complications from the COVID-19 virus. His death leaves behind a stunned family and a grieving community of friends. 

“I remember when the Ciccones bought the store (in 1982),” said Jonathan Weiner, whose grandfather, Charlie Beden, founded the business. “They were so nice to my grandfather. They really liked him, and he liked them. 

“Rick was the nicest person,” Weiner said, using Ciccone’s nickname. “When my grandfather died, Rick and his mother (Nancy) went to the graveside service in Peabody.”

Ciccone grew up in Revere and settled in Marblehead with his wife, Amy, and their three children. He was born in Maryland.

“We were Navy brats,” said John Ciccone III, Eric’s brother and the oldest of the three siblings. “My parents traveled all over.”

Eric Ciccone was a gymnast both at Revere High School and at UMass Amherst, where he majored in business administration.

John Ciccone Jr. (Eric’s father) and his wife purchased Beden’s in 1982 and immediately it was a family affair. John III, Eric and their sister, Theresa, all ran the store together. 

“He (Eric) and his brother kept Beden’s viable during a time when Home Depot and Lowe’s were in their ascendency,” said Gordon R. Hall, president of the Hall Company and chairman of the Lynn Business Partnership.

“I knew him the way you’d know people when you rubbed elbows with him in business situations,” said Hall, a director of Essex Media Group. “But he was just a delightful person. He was measured, polite, and amusing… and he had to have been intelligent because he helped navigate the store while Home Depot and Lowe’s were growing.”

“This is a huge loss,” said John Gilberg, president of Edison Realty in Lynn and also a director of Essex Media Group. “He was a good guy who gave a lot of his time to the city and for the betterment of the business community.”

Gilberg knew Ciccone both because their daughters are friends and because of his involvement with the Lynn Business Partnership, a group dedicated to improving the economic vitality and overall quality of life in Lynn. Gilberg is its vice chair and Ciccone was on the executive board.

“He played a very integral role in the Washington Street renovation back in the 1990s,” said Gilberg. “That involved redirecting streets in the downtown area.”

Before joining the LBP, Ciccone was a longtime member of the Greater Lynn Chamber of Commerce, where realtor Christopher Bibby, who was on the executive board, remembered him fondly.

“He certainly got involved with enthusiasm in everything he did,” said Bibby. “He was very helpful at the chamber while he was there. He did what he could do to make the world a better place.”

“This is devastating,” said his brother. “We were a team. This is horrible. I’m the oldest of the three and now I’m the only one left.” 

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