Buddy Cianci, Providence’s Longest Serving Mayor, Dead at 74

The twice convicted cancer survivor refused to fade away.

Photo via AP

Photo via AP

Former Providence mayor and twice convicted felon Vincent “Buddy” Cianci has died. He was 74.

Cianci was taping his weekly talk show for ABC6 News last night when he began to experience stomach pain, the Providence Journal reports. He died the next day. Earlier this month, Cianci got engaged his girlfriend, model and actress Tara Marie Haywood.

Cianci was first elected mayor of Providence in 1974 and never lost a mayoral contest until 1998. He was convicted of felony assault in 1984, and in 2002, Cianci was found guilty of a racketeering conspiracy charge. “I didn’t do this stuff,” he said at the time. “I will go all the way to the Supreme Court, The Hague, wherever they want to go.” He served four and a half years in federal prison.

Cianci, a cancer survivor, ran for mayor of Providence again in 2014, losing to Democrat Jorge Elorza. Cianci received 43.8 percent of the vote.

“It was a great ride,” he said in his concession speech. “I was able to reconnect with the city I love very much…It’s a great, great love affair that I have with the city of Providence that will never end, that will continue until the day I die.”