Cedardale founder dies at 89

RYAN HUTTON/ Staff file photoEd Veasey, a founder of Cedardale Health and Fitness, died this week. He's pictured in this April 2019 photo with his daughter, Carolyn Veasey Jackson, wife Zoe Veasey, and daughter Ada Veasey McKenzie.

HAVERHILL — John Edwin Veasey, half of the husband-wife duo that founded Cedardale Health and Fitness Center, has died.

The lifelong Haverhill resident everyone knew as "Ed" died just weeks after completing the reconstruction of the health club following a devastating fire during the winter of 2017.

Veasey died at his Brockton Avenue home on June 27, according to his obituary. He was 89 years old.

For the Veasey family, the opening of the new facility June 1 was a chance to create something they could not have envisioned back in 1971, when Ed and Zoe Veasey opened Cedardale with four indoor tennis courts and some basic strength and conditioning machines.

Ed Veasey was intimately involved at Cedardale from the beginning, his obituary reads, and he actively managed the two-year reconstruction and reopening after the original building was destroyed by a March 1, 2017, fire.

Veasey had an earlier career in banking first as vice president of the Family Mutual Savings Bank and later as a director of TD Banknorth.

Veasey served in the Marine Corps, becoming a first lieutenant in Quantico, Virginia, and serving for nine months as an embarkation officer in Japan.

In addition to serving his country, Veasey was active in his community, his family said. He was a freemason, a member of Merrimack Lodge, and served on the board of trustees of the Haverhill Public Library for many years. He also served as the president of the Haverhill Chamber of Commerce, and was involved with the Haverhill Rotary Club. Veasey also participated in the Monday Evening Club, a 25 member group that has been active in Haverhill since 1860, according to his family.

Veasey participated in several hobbies: He enjoyed sailing adventures to Alaska, Bermuda, Labrador, Newfoundland and Nova Scotia; skiing the slopes of Bretton Woods and Wildcat Mountain; and hitting the courts at Cedardale nearly every day in between.

Veasey is survived by his wife, Zoe, and five children; Ada McKenzie, Valerie Veasey, John Veasey Jr., Kate Sirois, and Carolyn Jackson, and 13 grandchildren.