Sal Cacciato, a revered senior field supervisor and dear friend at Access TCA, died October 31, 2011, in a motorcycle accident in Lisle, Ill. He was 64 years old and had been with Access for eight years. He was a talented manager, problem solver and technical expert who traveled to tradeshows throughout the country overseeing the assembly and striking of exhibits. His dedication to his job and broad experience placed him among the industry’s best.
“Sal was a wonderful and loyal member of the Access family. His incredible work ethic and drive motivated all those around him, and his knowledge of the industry made him a natural leader,” said Michael Yag, Access TCA founder and CEO. “Whenever Sal was on the show floor, I could be sure that whatever challenge arose, it would not only be handled, but considered an opportunity to showcase our resourcefulness. The loss of Sal has left a void that can’t be filled. He will be dearly missed.”
Sal’s disarming smile, generous heart and charismatic leadership earned him the affectionate moniker “Papa Bear” with friends and co-workers. His infectious, positive outlook inspired confidence, and it was a genuine pleasure to be in his company.
“He taught many of us the rules of the road and was always looking after us, like a father,” said Michelle Jacobsen of Access TCA. “Sal was not only a co-worker and an industry icon, but a loving friend who touched so many lives.”
Prior to joining Access, Sal built custom furniture and worked as a master carpenter in California and the Chicago area. He joined the Air Force in 1964 and proudly served two tours of duty in Vietnam.
“Sal’s smile lit up any darkened exhibit hall and any dark day,” said Shirley Hunt, conventions manager for Access client Eisai. “I will always remember his big smile as he would make his way over from across the exhibit hall to greet me.”
Born and raised in Chicago, Sal lived in Lisle. He is survived by his beloved wife Kathleen, four children, FrankyJean, Christopher, Sandra and Rebecca, a large extended family and a vast network of friends and colleagues.