Robert J. Cricenti
1946 - 2021
McCoy Funeral Home - Blacksburg
150 Country Club Dr SW
Blacksburg, VA
Robert J. Cricenti

August 26, 1946 - September 27, 2020

On Sunday, September 27, 2020, Robert Joseph Cricenti, 74, unexpectedly passed at his home in Blacksburg, Va. Known to many as Bobby, he was a loving Datok to his grandchildren and Uncle Bob to countless friends and students whom he regarded as family.

Bob was born and raised in New London, N.H., the son of Frank N. and Alma H. (Whitman) Cricenti. His early years would often find him playing with cousins at the family farm or working at the family market. He was deeply embedded in his community there participating in everything from scouting as a boy to the Rotary Club as a businessowner.

As a student he demonstrated an aptitude for mathematics and chose to continue his studies at Williams College. Bob enjoyed his time at Williams, he made lifelong friends and learned to see the world through a broader lens. After graduation he decided to dedicate his energies to help in the world and entered the Peace Corps. This choice took him to Malaysia where he met, and married, his wife of 49 years, Rita (Rabitah Zainuddin) Cricenti.

Bob and Rita returned to New London in 1971 and happily spent the next 45 years there contributing to their community and building a family. He, eventually, took over Cricenti's Markets, which grew into a small chain of grocery stores, and became an active member of Associated Grocers of New England.

In 2005, Bob sold the grocery stores and retired to Floyd, Va., where he became a "gentleman farmer." He contentedly spent his time playing with grandchildren, helping out on his daughter's farm, and learning to become an orchardist. He planted apples, pears, and plums, and refined his canning and baking skills. One of his favorite activities was baking apple pies for friends and family. When they weren't working the orchard, Bob and Rita spent time traveling. They loved to find new places to explore as well as returning to "home" with families in N.H., or Italy, or Malaysia.

After a dozen years or so, Bob decided it was time to retire from his retirement and sold their orchard home. He and Rita moved to Blacksburg, Va., where they had become active in the Malaysian American Student Association at Virginia Tech. Bob continued to enjoy an active retirement transporting grandchildren to activities, cheering on his Hokies, taking leisurely walks, taking in a Minor League ballgame, or trying any sort of new activity that struck his fancy.

Bob is survived by his wife, Rita; his brother, Philip Cricenti of New London, N.H.; his daughter, Soraya Cricenti of Burlington, N.C.; his daughter, Johanna Cricenti of Blacksburg, Va.; five grandchildren, Tony, Nyssa, Mia, Trent, and Wylie, and numerous cousins and family members worldwide.

Bob was interred at the Islamic Cemetery of New River Valley, on September 28, 2020. The family is planning to host a memorial in the spring 2021. In lieu of flowers, please contribute to your preferred charity, offer a prayer in your religious community, and, if eligible, vote.

Arrangements by McCoy Funeral Home, Blacksburg.
Published by Bristol Herald Courier on Oct. 8, 2020.
To plant trees in memory, please visit the Sympathy Store.
Memorial Gathering
2:00p.m. - 5:00p.m.
Lake Sunapee Country Club
Funeral services provided by:
McCoy Funeral Home - Blacksburg
Sponsored by McCoy Funeral Home - Blacksburg.
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20 Entries
Offering deepest sympathy Rita. I´ll always remember Bob´s special acts of kindness. God Bless you and family.
Helen Chitterling
July 3, 2021
No matter how early it was when I knocked on the door, Mr. Cricenti (to me), would open it, sleepy-eyed, and let me into the house to wait for friends to awaken. Quietly, I would read books, or play Atari until Soraya and Jo-Jo woke up to say "Hello". The Cricentis were more than friends, they were another family for me. Whether we were listening to records, playing "Little House on the Prairie", skiing, ice skating, riding bikes or climbing on boxes in the back room at the store, the whole family was always loving and kind towards me and my parents. I will always remember Mr. C with love. He made my childhood better every day for years.

Betsy (aka "Tilley")
Kyle Partridge Rasku
June 20, 2021
I am sorry to hear of Bobby's passing he will be missed. My sympathy to Rita, Johanna and Soraya.
keith messer
October 24, 2020
Those of us at the cousins table at family gatherings, weren't ready for another empty spot there yet. Bobby will be missed.
Doreen Paiva
October 14, 2020
I have such happy memories of Bobby. The last time I saw you and Bob, Rita, was on Little Sunapee Lake. I was in my kayak and you were in a canoe. That grocery store will always be Cricenti’s to me. Hugs to you all, Rita, Johanna, and Soraya.
Kaaren Drent
October 12, 2020
Bob left a lasting impression on us all! Seeing his smile as we entered Cricenti’s Market told us that we were in for a shopping treat! And to this day, the store rings the Cricenti’s bell! The loss of Bob to the New London community is heartfelt! And our love and sympathy are with you, Rita, and the girls.
Florence Millett
October 7, 2020
Beautiful eulogy and a beautiful life
Melissa J Leintz
October 7, 2020
Bobby, you will be missed by us all. I know I wasn't as close to you as some Brothers are, but I really enjoyed the time we did spend together at Family Gatherings and Holidays throughout the Years. There are some Great Memories! You did Great in your Life in all aspects, Business, Family and Overall Enjoyment of Life! You were there when I needed you, and I greatly appreciate it. You are gone way too soon. We will all still have all those Great Memories of you! Love, Philip
Philip Cricenti
October 6, 2020
Bob stood out in my Williams class of '68 as one of the friendliest and fun people I was privileged to know. He always picked up the mood of any gathering and never seemed to be promoting himself, except as a reliable friend and fellow student. I was very sorry to have missed him at our 50th reunion in 2018 and even more saddened to hear of his unexpected passing. May he rest in peace.
Bob Chambers
October 5, 2020
Was so sad to hear of Bobby’s passing. He did so much for so many. I had the privilege of working for both Bob and his dad Frank at Cricentis Market. It was one of the friendliest places I have ever worked. He will be missed by many.
Glenda Muzzey
October 3, 2020
Sincere condolences from the Folsom family
Linda (Towne) and Sandy Folsom
October 3, 2020
As a long time employee at Cricenti's Market in Hillsboro I am saddened to learn of Bobby's passing. The Cricenti family was wonderful to work for and incredibly generous to all the local communities. My sympathy to Rita and family.
October 2, 2020
Dear Crienti family, sorry for your loss, Bobby was one of a kind, a gentle caring person. He will be missed. When someone you love becomes a memory, the memory becomes a treasure.
Bob & Linda Jackman
October 2, 2020
Dear Family,
My first job at the age of 15 was at Cricenti's Market in New London, NH and I worked there part-time through my first year of college. Bobby was little older than me but we worked together often. As he took over the business he conducted himself in the same dedicated way as his father did. He was kind, hard working and he contributed in positive ways to the community. I shall never forget the day that my mother, Norma Marston, learned that Cricenti's had been sold. She and so many others felt a tremendous loss. Life in New London was never the same. I carry many fond memories of a wonderful family! My sincerest condolences to his family.
Jamie Marston
Jamie Marston
October 2, 2020
Dear Rita and family,
Joan and I were deeply saddened to hear of Bobby’s passing. We had already missed seeing that engaging smile when we entered Criscenti’s and by the way our family still refers to Hannaford as Criscenti. We know what a positive impact he had on our community through his kindness and generosity. Our hearts go out to you and your family.
All our love,
Gary, Joan, Anastasia, Alexander, and Natasha
Gary Robinson
October 2, 2020
Rita, I’m so sorry for your loss. Bob was one of the first people I met when I came up to NH. Peter introduced him to me at Crecenti’s, and said Bob was one of the “nicest guys around.” You’ve both did so much for the community, and I knew firsthand how generous the Crescenti family was to the school district. Bob was a good man.
I will pray for you and your family. Cherish all your special memories and keep his spirit alive.
—- Diane Kusinski
Diane Kusinski
October 2, 2020
I'm so sorry to hear of Bobby's passing. Our families met in 70s in New London. Please accept my sympathy & prayers at this sad time.
June Feeley
October 2, 2020
Rita and family--I am so very sorry about Bobby's passing. Even to someone like me who didn't know him well, he was a dear man, always very kind and caring. And he could make me laugh too! As you might expect, I think of you and your family very often, given my home here on MPR, and I will continue to do so warmly. Wishing you peace and comfort as you grieve such a great loss.
Karen Zurheide
October 2, 2020
I continue to visualize Bobby’s kind and smiling countenance. Blessings Rita. Sincerely, Helen Chitterling
Helen Chitterling
October 2, 2020
Bobby was a wonderful person who gave so much to those around him. We are shocked at his passing too soon. Our hearts go out to the family, especially Rita and the girls.
Newman and “Charlie” Durell
October 1, 2020
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