Rich was an exceptional man who was loved by many, and generous beyond generous. Rich approached everything in his life at “full-speed” and his viva-la-vie attitude and determination were remarkable -- there was absolutely no quit in him. Rich passed away peacefully at home with his family by his side.
Rich was the beloved husband of Beverley; cherished father of Rick (Andrea) and Barb Spears (Kevin); proud Grandfather (Hank) to Jessica (Leigh), Megan, Drew and James; and loving brother of Jayne and Tony and brother-In-Law of Margot Matthews.
Rich was the epitome of a self-made man yet attributed all of his success to having surrounded himself with smart and wonderful people. In 1980 at the age of 43, Rich used every asset that his wife Beverley and his parents Frank and Helen Eastwood had to buy Central Box & Container Ltd., a small packaging company in Mississauga with ten employees. Today, based on Rich’s extraordinary leadership and natural entrepreneurship (others may refer to it as a level of rare competitiveness!) and his unrelenting focus on solving customers' problems, The Central Group of Companies is recognized as a Platinum member of Canada’s Best-Managed Companies and employs 500 people in North America. Rich has built a unique, innovative and thriving business with a genuine family culture of care for everyone.
To say that Rich was an avid sportsman is an understatement; he was interested in Golf, Tennis, Fishing and Skiing, and he fanatically supported every Toronto professional sports team and every Canadian athlete with pride. Rich’s favourite place was his cottage on Lake Rosseau in Muskoka, surrounded by his family and friends, and puttering in his garden or racing around in his prized antique wooden Greavette boat / Gentleman’s Racer, the “BlackJack”. Rich loved spending Canadian winters in California at his home in Palm Desert with his wife Bevie and cherished their time with great friends and golf buddies. Rich was also very fond of his dog and best pal Josh, and grand-dogs Disco, Chief, ZigZag, Boe and Bear.
Rich wore his heart on his sleeve and his famous credo are words for us all to live by and will live on for generations to come: Work hard, play hard and give and get as many hugs as you can.