News Story
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RIP Chuck Leone

Thursday, 11 February 2021 ( #1012 ) - Norcross, GA, United States
Chuck Leone
Chuck Leone
Hyundai Construction Equipment Americas has regretfully announced the passing of executive vice president and COO Chuck Leone, who died of complications due to COVID-19 last month. "Our company and the entire industry has lost a great leader, mentor and friend," says J.Y. Kim, Hyundai president and CEO. Chuck Leone's legendary career spanned over 50 years. Starting out in national account sales at Clark, he then moved on to greater achievements and responsibilities as branch manager for a Yale factory store. He was VP of sales and marketing at Nissan Forklift and then VP of sales at both GNB Battery and Jungheinrich, before arriving at Hyundai, where he significantly grew Hyundai Forklift's distribution network and overall business in North America. His career achievements reflected his great love and respect for his family, employees, dealers and customers. He lived by the motto "always do the right thing and you'll win in the long run", which he applied in business and proved successful throughout his career. His hard work and dedication earned him the Hyundai Global Employee of the Year Award in 2019, an award he received with great honour. Ted Springer, president of Springer Equipment - current MHEDA chairman and Hyundai dealer principal, reflects on his colleague as follows: "All of us who had the good fortune to meet Chuck Leone were blessed to know him. Chuck was an industry veteran who treated young sales and support representatives with the same kindness and respect he showed industry CEOs. Chuck's sincere personality endeared him to those who met him. He was truly a global leader for Hyundai Material Handling and we will miss him dearly." Paul Farrell, president and CEO of Modern Group, adds: "It is not often you meet a man that is the epitome of a businessman, gentleman and, most importantly, friend. However, Chuck managed to do just that. He will be missed for his great big smile, calm demeanour and ability to connect with anyone in the room. Chuck has left an everlasting impact on the industry." Born and raised in Chicago, Illinois, Chuck Leone was a diehard Chicago sports fan with a love for a good Chicago hot dog or Italian beef. Chuck was childhood friends with Mike Dougherty, former dealer principal of Dougherty Equipment, and they remained best of friends up until Chuck's passing. "A dear and loyal friend, he had a remarkable way of connecting with people, and he will be greatly missed," says Dougherty. Chuck is survived by his wife of 54 years, Toni Leone, his son Charles (Sharon) Leone and grandson Chuck and son Christian. The family has established the Chuck Leone '63 Memorial Fund to support Fenwick High School, his alma mater in Oak Park, IL. To donate online, go to: https://www.fenwickfriars.com/institutional-advancement/make-a-gift/, making sure to select 'Chuck Leone '63 Memorial Gifts' under the 'I want to support' section.
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