Ruth (Betsy) and John Bevilacqua
The shop’s first location was at the corner of Martin and Main Streets in Essex, MA. Besides servicing radios and televisions, the shop sold new units as an early dealer for Motorola and Zenith. The business also installed and repaired sound systems, some permanent, and some for special events such as concerts and meetings.
Essex RADIO and TELEVISION Service was founded almost 65 years ago by John and Ruth (Betsy) Bevilacqua. But first, following his discharge from the Army in 1947, John worked for Aoellian-Skinner Organ Company in Boston, building and servicing their organs throughout New England. On the side, John had been going to radio and television school under his GI bill benefit, and decided in 1955 to start his own business.
(1956) First truck
Son, Arthur. participated in the business from an early age, first breaking old transformers apart to recover copper wire, and then graduating to simple radio repairs at approximately age 8. He earned engineering degrees from Northeastern and Rensselaer and worked as an engineer for New England Power Service Co. and its successors. He continued to work at the TV shop during this entire time because of his love of fixing up broken things, bringing them back to life. He now runs Essex Radio and Television Service full time with the help of sons, Michael and Tony, and his wife, Linda.
One of John’s favorite hobbies was participating in parades or other events using one of his antique vehicles, equipped with sound systems, to play music or to make announcements.
Pictured here with his 1926 train sound car.
In 1960 the business moved to its current location at 40 Main Street, where John and Betsy ran the shop until John’s death at age 85 in 2012. Betsy passed away in 2016. John and Betsy had been constant companions both in their work lives and in their service to the organizations they belonged to and to the community.
Our current location on the 1st Floor of 40 Main Street, Essex, Massachusetts with parking in front.
Essex Radio and Television Truck with Public Address Sound System at Essex ClamFest event.