After Dario: Behind the scenes at Pegoretti, a company in mourning

by Aaron Guy Leroux

photography by Aaron Guy Leroux

On August 23, 2018, after a long day at the office, Dario Pegoretti smoked his last of many cigarettes for the day. He brought himself to his feet, shut off the lights, locked the door of his Verona workshop, then began walking towards the entrance of the industrial park where the legendary, custom steel frames bearing his name are born.

As he reached the front of the complex, in the shade of a large tree planted in the courtyard, Dario collapsed. By the time the ambulance arrived, Dario was already gone. He was 62 years old. What followed his death was a multi-month struggle for power, control, but most of all, for understanding.

For Cristina Würdig, now co-CEO and long time friend of Dario, those months were challenging.

“Emotionally, I cannot imagine a tougher time than that one. Because, it really broke our hearts,” she said. “So the business side was the simple part actually. The thought of losing the job some months before was ridiculous compared to what I was feeling.”

For years, Dario’s employees toiled in the shadow of the charismatic man. None more so than Pietro “Pero” Pietricola, Dario’s friend and employee of over two decades. Pietro is and has been the heart of the Officina Dario Pegoretti. It has been his skill, his eye, his insatiable demand for perfection that has helped drive the quality and artistry of Pegoretti frames.

Now, with Dario gone, Pietro and his team are fighting to redefine themselves and their company, while they mourn the profound loss of their friend and founder.

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