Ed (or Bud as we all called him then) and I first met when we were about 12 years old. Grew up in Chicago together. We meet in a hobby shop on Milwaukee Ave where we learn about making and flying model airplanes. We both loved airplanes from the start. As we grew up we developed other interests, cars, girls, drinking beer and generally raising hell. Ed was really a smart guy and always full of fun and of surprises. I remember when he graduated from High School he won an appointment to the AF Academy form the Senator Everett Dirksen. But decided he was having too much fun in Chicago, so he politely said, “No Thanks”.
On his last visit I asked him about any new projects, he said he had some notes on a Western History thing and another on a young man growing up in Chicago. I would have loved to have seen the latter. We did lots of crazy things growing up. I remember one Spring Friday night we're going out drinking and after picking Ed up we decide we need to stop at Nelson-Hirschberg Ford and test drive Ford's new 1964 Mustang. So we took one out for test drive, I drove it first with the salesman in the front seat and Ed in the back. Just a few blocks both Ed and I could see the car was nothing special. Might have even been a 6 cylinder. So now its Ed turn to drive. He jumps in and floors it tells the salesman to hang on and slams on the brakes. The car drift all over the place coming to a stop them floors it again. We doing 40-50 down the side streets in Chicago which are posted at 25, skidding and four wheel drifting around the corners. The salesman now has turned white and is calmly trying to walk Ed into slowing down, with no luck. After about 15 Min we return to the dealers ship where Ed critiques' the salesman on what a piece of crap the car was and what they need to do to improve the car before he'll buy one. Then off we go to Casey's for a night of drinking Meister Bräu Bock beer.
Ed was a great writer because he had a lot of great life experiences to write about. He certainly lived life to its fullest. We were each other “Best Man” at our weddings. We were lucky to have even survived those bashes. Ed did know how to party.
You don't have many lifelong friends and Ed's passing will make the world a lonelier place for me. A nickel on the grass old buddy.