Edwin (Ed) Leon Best, 86, of DeLand, Florida died peacefully Tuesday, November 26, 2013 in the privacy and comfort of his home surrounded by his family. Ed was born in Titusville, FL and moved to Daytona Beach, where he graduated from Mainland High School. He moved to Deland in 1958. His working years were spent as a Professional Engineer and a Professional Land Surveyor with the 5th District of the Florida Department of Transportation where he retired as the District Design Engineer. He proudly served in World War II in the U. S. Navy. As a member of the First Presbyterian Church of DeLand he served as a Deacon and with the church was a board member with the Hugh Ash Manor. Ed attended the University of Florida where he was a member of the Fighting Gator Band. He was an Eagle Scout, Life Member of the EAA and NRA, and a member of the Loudmouths Coffee Club. He loved woodworking and flying and traveled extensively. Ed was adventurous and liked to try new things. His 85th birthday was celebrated by making a skydiving jump. Ed was preceded by his parents, James Edwin and Violet G. Best, brother Donald, first wife Lois Watkins Best, and cherished German Shepard, Ricky. He is survived by his wife of 23 years Mae Best, son Edwin (Kip), stepsons John, Robert and David McKechnie, and stepdaughter Mae Wilson (Doug). Along with 12 grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren. He cherished his family and enjoyed spending his time with his grandchildren and great grandchildren. He was especially proud to be the first to hold great granddaughters Billie and Banner at their births. Celebration of Life service will be held on Friday, December 6, 2013 at 1:00 PM at Lankford Funeral Home. Friends may leave a message of comfort for the family at www.lankfordfuneralhome.com.
Published in Daytona Beach News-Journal on Dec. 3, 2013