A self-made man of many talents and normally sporting a black cowboy hat, Edwin Victor Anderson was born at home in Palouse, Washington, June 19, 1934, and passed away at home, near Potlatch, Idaho, September 22, 2021. He graced our world for 87 years, 3 months and 3 days. His parents were Victor Martin and Leona Lula (Hulett) Anderson. His paternal grandparents were Martin Alexander and Elesa Cornelia (Tuft) Anderson; his maternal grandparents were August William "Gus" and Betty Louanna (Lance) Hulett. He was the eldest of five siblings with one sister, Joann, and three brothers, William Robert, Michael Lynn and Martin Alex.
Ed lived in Palouse with his dad, mom and sis until he was about nine or ten years old, then they moved to a newly-built house on the Anderson farm in East Cove near Potlatch, Idaho. The house is now occupied by his nephew, Shane Anderson. The land had been homesteaded in 1877 by his great grandfather, A. A. Anderson, 13 years before Idaho became a state.
Ed attended Palouse schools until he graduated (along with 25 others) in 1952. He met his future wife, Leon Betty Jane "Betty" Tuttle, while they were Juniors, proposed to her in their Senior year on George Washington's birthday, and wedded her almost immediately after their graduation on June 1, 1952. They were married 56 years until her too-sudden passing, (from complications of a brain aneurysm repair), on September 19, 2008. The couple had two children, Victoria Ann and Kerry Rick. After residing at Frank Weber's farm four years, he moved his family to his late Great Uncle Frank Anderson's farm in October 1958 and was only the second family member to become the owner of the now-100-year-old home.
Although Ed grew up on a farm, he decided in high school that he didn't want to be a farmer, rather he had two ambitions: to help the farmer and be his own boss. Seizing the opportunity to accomplish these dual decisions, at the age of 21, he started his first business by building a trencher and establishing a ditching and tiling service designed to allow more acreage of The Palouse to be cultivated for crops. The first job was for Bunny Boone. He provided this service in Whitman and Latah counties for about 20 years, later passing it to his son. He also worked for the R. A. Hanson Company off and on for several years and in 1962 was sent to Israel as a foreman with Hanson's equipment to help complete the Jordan Canal. Eventually, he opened a welding shop on Main Street in Palouse, formerly an old brewery. He could create anything with metal; it was his most prolific talent. Later, he moved the expanding operation across the street and it became Palouse Welding and Machine Shop. He and the skilled machinists he hired repaired or built all manner of parts for damaged farm equipment, machinery and other vehicles. He also helped develop and manufacture the Palouse Zero Till, a no-till drill to help keep topsoil from eroding unnecessarily due to the farming methods of the time. He even held a patent on an internal part for a seeder. When Ed retired from Palouse Welding in 1995, his brother Marty purchased and ran the shop; it is still in operation with nephew Alex Anderson at the helm. Even though he "retired", he never stopped working.
Ed had other interests and pursuits and with each one he was "in all the way". He and Betty took dancing lessons when they were first married and excelled at it; it was a pleasure to watch them together. At community functions that included dancing on the itinerary, he invited every lady there to take a turn on the floor, making sure no one was left out. He learned to ski as an adult, visiting every ski area within driving distance and as far away as Montana and California. He regularly skied the expert trails and later trained to become a ski patrolman at North South Ski Bowl near Emida. He took flying lessons and soloed; he signed up for scuba lessons and became a certified diver. He and Betty managed the Congress Hotel and cafe in Palouse for a time; and, they ran a snack bar at Tamarack Ski Area near Troy for two seasons. He also enjoyed camping and fishing and being social. He could strike up a subtle conversation with a complete stranger and at the end have a new friend.
Over the years, Ed was active in the Silver Spurs Saddle Club, Moscow Elks, Palouse Lions Club and Palouse-Clearwater Search and Rescue (SAR). He poured years into this volunteer endeavor, pursuing every aspect of training and then teaching SAR methods such as First Aid, how to track an ELT (Emergency Locator Transmitter), and rappelling, not just for himself but the team members as well. Eventually, he became the coordinator of that organization, bringing together various other aspects of rescue service (Civil Air Patrol, dog handlers, Sheriff's department, Eagle Scouts, USAF, etc.) to maximize a successful outcome in the event someone became lost.
Two of Ed's great loves were spending time in Arizona and at Dworshak Reservoir. He had a second home in the Yuma foothills; and, starting in 1981-82 he and Betty became Snowbirds for up to six months of the year. He was able to spend this last winter there. He had established a small welding shop on his lot and supplied other Snowbirds and local Yumans with all types of wrought iron. In later years, he transitioned to exclusively providing gate repair. He also visited every attraction the state had to offer and was always inviting friends to come for a visit, "Let's go to the desert!" If they weren't able to make the trip there, he invited them to Idaho to fish for kokanee salmon at Dworshak on his pontoon boat, "Let's go fishing!" He kept a perpetual campsite at Lillard's Campground. He probably hosted and entertained hundreds of people at both locations. He also enjoyed hunting, snowmobiling, attending rodeos, flying remote control aircraft, target shooting, playing cards and telling jokes.
Extraordinarily healthy most of his life, except perhaps for many injuries, his last few years were plagued by medical issues. He needed a new heart valve and pacemaker (age 81); he suffered a stroke that affected his memory and interfered with his ability to speak (age 85); and, was finally diagnosed with CML (chronic myeloid leukemia) in August.
Besides his wife, Ed was preceded by passing of: parents, Mr. Vic and Leona; brothers, Bill and Mike; son, Rick; brothers-in-law, John Lacy and Leo Tuttle; sister-in-law, Ileene Kinman; son-in-law, Charles "Chip" Latrell; nieces, Rebecca Flaa and Kodianne Stephens; nephews, Johnny Lacy and Kevin Kinman. Family members left behind: sister, Joann Lacy, St. Maries; brother, Marty (Joyce), Potlatch; daughter, Vickie Latrell, Colorado Springs; grandson, Edwin Matthew Latrell, NC; granddaughter, Amanda Marie (Steven) White, TX; great grandsons, Charles Edwin and Jonathon Neal Latrell, NC; bonus grandsons, Mike and Clay Latrell, NM, and Moses Boone, Pullman; bonus granddaughters, Monica (Dan) Shoemaker, Sandpoint, Emily Boone, CA; bonus great grandson, Colton White, TX; bonus great granddaughters, Hailee Peacock (Consejero), FL, Gabby Withington (Consejero), HI, Brooke and Kailey White, TX; brother-in-law, Bob (Denice) Tuttle, Steptoe; nieces, Chris (Larry) Knight, Spokane, Pam Magers, St. Maries, Heidi (Tom) Davis, Potlatch, Dana (Kent) McGreal, Harvard, Dani (Mike) Funseth, MT, Kim (James) Telford, Middleton, Kasi (Tony) Peck, Eagle, Nicole Robeson, Clarkston, Corinne Kinman, Potlatch, Karen "Pony" Sims, Post Falls, Pamela Keplinger, AL, Christy Tuttle, Spokane; nephews, Shane, Monte and Alex Anderson, Norman (Jessica) Kinman and Christopher Tuttle, AL; later-in-life companion, Sarah Rigby, Montpelier, ID; and, bonus family, Tim and Colleen Boone, Palouse.
Ed Anderson was a hard-working, fun-loving, friend-making man with a plenty of integrity (and a great deal of stubbornness!). He had a lasting impact on his community providing needed services, creating employment in his business, participating and leading organizations of which he was a member, and showing family and friends a good time! He is missed already.
A graveside service will be held 11:00 a.m., Saturday, October 16, 2021, at Greenwood Cemetery, Palouse, Washington. An Open House will be held at Ed's home, from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m., Sunday, October 17, 2021, at 1170 McBride Road, Potlatch, Idaho.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in Ed's name to: Palouse Community Center, PO Box 23, Palouse, WA 99161, Potlatch Ambulance Fund, PO Box 63, Potlatch, Idaho, 83855.
Kramer Funeral Home of Palouse, Washington is caring for the family. Online condolences may be left at www.kramercares.com
Palouse Community Center
p.o. Box 23, Palouse WA 99161
Potlatch Ambulance Fund
PO Box 63, Potlatch ID 83855