Italian ride manufacturing stalwart Corrado Munari has passed away. The founder of IE Park and owner of the Soli bumper car marque, died on August 22, aged 69.
Born in Poviglio in 1938, Munari began working for Spaggiari & Barbieri in the early ‘60s and later formed his own company in Reggio Emilia. Now known as IE Park (Impianti Elettrici per Parchi), the firm began life as Electric Park.
Travelling widely, Munari established contacts worldwide, particularly in the Middle East, where he was considered a ‘pioneer’ throughout the ‘70s and ‘80s. In 1975, together with other partners, he took over the historic company Soli Ernesto, famous for its bumper cars. Corrado Munari was also a founder member of the Italian manufacturers’ trade association ANCASVI, and for many years served as its vice-president.
It was in the 1990s that his children Andrea, Claudia and Elena became involved with the family business, and who steer its direction to this day. Corrado’s strength outside the amusement industry was demonstrated earlier on in his life when, together with wife Franca, he was forced to come to terms with the loss of the couple’s first son Brunetto at the age of seven.
Corrado learned of a serious illness in 1999 and soon after underwent quadruple heart bypass surgery, experiencing substantial and unexpected improvements in the following years, meaning he was never far away from the business or his office, which adjoined the family home, until the very end. Although doctors were evaluating the possibility of using new and innovative surgical techniques to improve his condition, sadly time did not allow Corrado to see the benefit.
The funeral took place August 23 and messages of condolence were received from all over the world