Edward FARMILANT

Obituary
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FARMILANT, Edward "It's been a good run" Edward Farmilant philanthropist, humorist, humanist, lover of life, man of integrity, passed away on Thursday, February 15, 2018 at home after a long illness. His good humor and joie de vivre saw him through to the end. He was 86.He is survived by wife Barbara of 35 years; children, Michael Farmilant, Steve Farmilant (Mary), Elisa Farmilant (Steve Justin), Janine Farmilant (Steve Saxe) and two stepsons, Charles Pugh (Olivia) and Leonard Pugh as well as 18 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He and Barbara traveled extensively, shared a lifetime of experiences, friendships and talking politics. Ed will be remembered for his philanthropy, his love of world travel, appreciation of the arts, an unfailing sense of humor, his ever- inquisitive mind, and foremost for his devotion and thoughtfulness toward his family, his cherished dog Maya, and his countless loving friends. On one of their trips to Tucson during a harsh Chicago winter, Ed fell in love with Sabino Canyon and the mountains. In the early 90s after selling two large nursing homes in Chicago that they had owned and operated, the Farmilants moved to the "Old Pueblo" permanently. During his busy life in Tucson, he was very involved in his community. He was an avid Wildcat basketball fan while his friend Lute Olsen was coach. He and Barbara became involved with many performing arts groups including UA Presents, the Tucson Symphony, ATC, etc. He served on many non- profit boards and won countless awards. His love of music and the arts was so great t hat he was inspired to buy the old KGUN studio building on Sixth Avenue and turn it into the Southwest Music Center, a school dedicated to music and performing arts education for youth, taught by professionals and offered on a pay as you can basis. By night, the building became an acoustic music (one of his great loves) performance center. Ultimately, he sold the building to the Tucson Symphony at a bargain price to be used as their main headquarters and rehearsal center. Ed always had time to mentor young people. One of his greatest pleasures was being able to provide college funding for minority students through his participation in the UA Medici Circle, as well as the Ed and Barbara Farmilant Charitable Lead Trust. He was a member of the National Guild of Community Schools of the Arts from which he received a service award in 2009. He also founded the PRIME (Pride Radiates in Music Education) School of Music which served nearly 300 students in Tucson. He was a lifetime Honorary member of the Tucson Symphony Orchestra. Ed took great joy in entertaining his family and friends, regaling them with his favorite jokes and singing one of the many songs he knew - he would burst into song at the slightest request. "Moonlight in Vermont" was a favorite. From jazz to opera and everything in between, his taste in music was as eclectic as he was. His sense of humor touched everyone, he was a friend to those in need, and many benefited from his wisdom and sage advice. Friend Ed Buckley summed up Ed's political passion best. "Ed was equally passionate about politics and a man with a true moral compass. Not phony -baloney moral rhetoric but something deeply rooted in his core sense of equality and justice. He had little patience for "thoughts and prayers" in times of chaos and crisis. Instead he would ask "what can we do about this." He backed political candidates he felt would make the best decisions for us all, right up until the end as cancer was rapidly taking him from us." And finally, "Ed was a guy who asked probing questions and voiced opinions strongly. He called "nonsense" when he saw it, even when it came from friends and family members. He loved the world and left it a better place by example and action." A Celebration of Ed's Life will be held on Saturday, March 24, 2018 from 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. at the Tucson Symphony Center located at 2175 N. 6th Ave. In lieu of flowers, please contribute to EMERGE or the YWCA of Southern Arizona. Arrangements by ANGEL VALLEY FUNERAL HOME.


Funeral Home
Angel Valley Funeral Home & Old Pueblo Crematory
2545 N. Tucson Blvd.
Tucson, AZ 85716
(520) 327-6341
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Published in the Arizona Daily Star on Mar. 11, 2018