A Legend and Friend to Remember – Riccardo Bestetti
With regret I must tell those that don’t already know that we sadly lost an incredible person this week. That person was Mr. Riccardo Bestetti, one of greatest shoemakers and minds the shoe industry has ever seen. He was only 49 years old and passed away this Monday. Whilst not knowing exactly how or why as he had just recently informed me that he was in the hospital for lung inflammation and respiratory problems, but also assured me that it was nothing grave and that he would soon be better. So it came as a big blow as I thought nothing of it since he was still so active on text and social media. Next thing, I know I am getting a phone call from our mutual friend telling me of the horrible news, the 2nd person this month that was close to me having passed away. Such a shame.
For those that didn’t know him personally, he was an amazing person. He was so real, not one ounce of fakeness in him, which I loved. We have been communicating for years over email and were fortunate enough to have several encounters in multiple places in Italy and even in NYC where we got to know each other quite well. What I loved about him was the fact that he was so passionate. But not for fame nor being known but for making great shoes, making people happy and most importantly for his family. He loved his son beyond belief.
One of the most admirable things for me was when he told me, ‘you know Justin, as much as I love to meet my clients around the world, I hate travelling to do trunk shows.’ I asked him why (as I love trunk shows) and he told me ‘because I can’t stand to be away from my son longer than 2 days.’ And the love he felt for his son, I could feel as when he was explaining it you could see that with all of his being, he meant every single word and feeling he was saying for his son. It was powerful and resonated with me as I feel the same for my son, although I am able to travel for longer because in my eyes, I do it all for him.
This was one just of the great things about him. His integrity was admirable, his shoes were exquisite and his name will forever live on in greatness for me. Rest in Peace Caro Amico Mio, Grande Freccia Bestetti!!!!!