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NEW: Cianci Checks Out of Hospital After Collapse, Attends Celebratory Dinner

Friday, November 20, 2015


5:45 pm Cianci gives remarks

It has been a whirlwind evening for the former Mayor of Providence Vincent "Buddy" Cianci. First, Cianci's Mayoral portrait was released, then he collapsed at the ceremony and was rushed to Roger Williams Hospital by Providence EMTs, and to cap the night he checked himself out and attended the celebration dinner at Roma on the Hill.

It is never dull in the life Cianci. The portrait ceremony was attended by more than 100, with hosts including former Providence Mayor Joseph Paolino, Cranston Mayor Allen Fung, State Representative John Lombardi, Providence Council President Luis Aponte, Majority Leader Kevin Jackson and Union leader Paul MacDonald. The who's who had one glaring miss - sitting Mayor Jorge Elorza did not attend. 

At 6:15 pm Cianci is rushed to Roger Williams Hospital as former Mayor Joe Paolino looks on

Cianci was in typical Cianci form - at his portrait unveiling he outlined the success he achieved as Mayor -- refurbishing Providence Performing Arts Center, building Waterplace, Providence Place Mall, rescuing Trinity Rep from bankruptcy and more than a dozen other successes during his tenure as Mayor.

During the ceremony, Cianci delivered the line of the year, when describing the painting Cianci said, "It's not the first time I've been framed," to a roar of laughter in the crowd. 


After the Hospital

After the visit to the hospital, Cianci said in an interview with GoLocal that he appreciated the response and help from the Providence Fire Department. The Fire Department is in a major labor dispute with sitting Mayor Elorza.

Cianci, speaking from his post-portrait event at Roma on the Hill, told GoLocal the scare was chalked up as dehydration and low blood sugar.

"After my speech, I felt a little weak, it was hot in there," said Cianci.  "Thank goodness for the firefighters, they got there quick and they did a great job."

By 8:20 Cianci is at Roma on the Hill celebrating his portrait

The dinner at Roma was attended by about 100 and served as a fundraiser to Cianci's Scholarship Fund.

Cianci's Career

Cianci spent 21 years as Mayor and oversaw the redevelopment and historic preservation of the City. He twice left office with felonies and served five years in federal prison. The Mayor is one the best known Mayors in America and has a national reputation for his overseeing the Renaissance era of Providence. In 2014, he ran again, but was beat by Elorza in the general election. Today, he hosts a radio show in the afternoons on WPRO-AM.

This article was originally published at 8:10 pm on November 19, 2015 and was updated.

Related Slideshow: Buddy Cianci in Pop Culture

Take a tour of Buddy Cianci's career from walk on roles on TV dramas to featured in pop art.

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Shepard Fairey exploded on to the global stage when he designed the iconic "Hope" poster of President Obama, but he had rocked Providence when he attended RISD with his installations/graffiti cut- and-past on Buddy Cianci's re-election posters.  

Photo by El-Pablo via Flickr


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Mike Stanton, the author of "Prince of Providence," wrote the ultimate biography of Buddy Cianci - it was optioned for a movie with stars rumored for the role of Cianci ranging from Oliver Platt to Russell Crowe.

The movie has yet to be produced.

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Jr. High

RISD grad Seth MacFarlane created the ultimate Rhode Island joke with his TV series, "Family Guy." 

One of the show's backdrops is "Buddy Cianci Jr. High School."

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Narrated by Rhode Island's own James Wood and directed by Sherry Wood, the documentary, "BUDDY, The Rise and Fall of America's Most Notorious Mayor," proved to be a snap shot of Cianci's life.

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Buddy's Book

Nothing says Buddy Cianci like Buddy's own tell all autobiography. The post-jail book tried to even some scores and serve as a balance to Pulitzer prize winning investigative reporter Mike Stanton's, "Prince of Providence." 

Buddy's book with the short title of "Politics and Pasta," failed to deliver the context and range of Stanton's book.

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T Shirt

The best Buddy T-shirt going. 

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Pasta Sauce

The infamous Buddy Cianci sauce was a favorite for the Mayor to hand out to VIPS.

The profits from the sale of the sauce are intended to support scholarship for students.

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Early Art

One of the most expressive pieces of Buddy Cianci art was an early campaign poster from the 1970's.

The poster is now a collector's item.

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60 Minutes

After his conviction but before he reported for Federal prison, Cianci appeared on CBS News' 60 Minutes news magazine.

Cianci was resolute in his appearance.

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NBC Star

Buddy Cianci had his appearances on the 1999 NBC prime time drama, "Providence."

The show was shot in part in the Rhode Island capitol city. Cianci seemed to be everywhere during the production of the show.

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"The next Governor of RI" was how Cianci was introduced at the GOP national convention in 1980.

Take a look at Cianci's speech as captured in a Flashback on NBC 10.  


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