Longtime Owner of Cedardale, John ‘Ed’ Veasey Dies, at 89

Cedardale owner Ed Veasey, right, tours the fire-damaged health and fitness center. (WHAV News File photograph.)

John Edwin “Ed” Veasey, who oversaw Cedardale’s founding, growth, disaster and rebirth, died in the company of his family at his home on Brockton Avenue yesterday.

Born Feb. 17, 1930 to Decia Beebe and Arthur Hale Veasey, Veasey grew up at 5 Windsor St. in Haverhill with three siblings.

For high school, Veasey attended Governor Dummer Academy in Byfield, graduating in 1949.

From there, he enrolled at Syracuse University and joined the Delta Kappa Epsilon (DKE) fraternity, eventually becoming President of the Phi Gamma Chapter of DKE. While at school, he played on the varsity lacrosse team as a high-scoring midfielder.

He later married, Zoe Mary Marshall, a Munnsville, N.Y., resident he met during his studies. Marshall and Veasey were married for the rest of Veasey’s life.

After his graduation and wedding to Marshall, Veasey enlisted in the Marine Corps. Serving as a 1st lieutenant he split his time in the marines stationed at Quantico, Va., and later on the Japanese coast as an embarkation officer.

His time served, Veasey took a job at Haverhill Bank as a mortgage teller until he matriculated at Brown University in the Graduate School of Savings Banking. Degree in hand, he became the Director of TD Banknorth until he reached mandatory retirement age of 72.

Veasey, with his wife and two business partners, founded Cedardale, the Boston Road fitness club, in 1971. They grew the four-court tennis club into a multipurpose Merrimack Valley fixture. Veasey, still at the helm of Cedardale, managed, with his family, the recently completed two-year rebuild following a fire in winter of 2017.

The fire, ruled accidental by the state fire marshal’s office and local officials after a three-month investigation, caused between $2 and $5 million in damage, according to the family. The blaze began in a women’s locker room starting from several possible sources, including electrical wiring, small appliances or light fixtures.

Veasey, proud of the results of the construction, told WHAV in April, “Conceptually, I bet you couldn’t find another place in the country or in the world that would be equal to what is going on here.”

Veasey was an avid tennis player and could be found on the courts at Cedardale nearly every day.

Ed is survived by his wife, Zoe; five children, Ada McKenzie, Valerie Veasey, John Veasey Jr., Kate Sirois and Carolyn Jackson; and 13 grandchildren, Bryce McKenzie, Marshall McKenzie, Grace Veasey, Katie Veasey, Addie McKenzie, Zoe McKenzie, Edwin Sirois, Lucille Sirois, Leland Sirois, Lawson Sirois, Beebe Jackson, Veasey Jackson, and Liberty Jackson.

The funeral is private. Arrangements are by Dole, Childs & Shaw Funeral Home, 148 Main St., Haverhill. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be made to the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center, 55 Fruit St, Boston, MA 02114, and the Haverhill Public Library, 99 Main St., Haverhill, MA 01830.

Comments are closed.