Edward Thomas Neal
Born: 9/4/1921, LaGrange, Ohio
Edward Thomas Neal was born September 4th, 1921 in LaGrange, Ohio to Leral Thomas and Matilda Neal. Ed was the fourth of six children. Ed had four brothers and one sister.
Ed was raised on a dairy farm outside of Oberlin, Ohio. He graduated from Oberlin H.S. and shortly after he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force. He served 3 ˝ years where he eventually became an instructor in Florida. He was discharged in 1945 and joined his wife and 6 month old son (Brent) in Shelby, Montana.
Edward spent the next 15 years working in Shelby and eventually opened his own business, “The Lucky Thirteen”, a men’s clothing store. Ed worked hard to support his family, including everything from a local disc jockey to car salesman, and the manager of the local movie theater, where his children enjoyed the benefit of free admission and concessions.
Ed sold his business in Shelby and moved with his family to Orem, Utah in 1961. Ed decided to attend Barber College in Salt Lake City, and while at the school was approached by the Mayor of Moab, Norman Boyd, about going to Moab and working at the Esquire Barber Shop. In the summer of 1961 his family followed him to Moab where they made their home for the next 47 years. Ed eventually opened his own shop, “Ed’s Barber Shop”, where he worked until he retired at the age of 80.
Ed was involved in his community and held several positions including: 1. President of Shelby’s Chamber Of Commerce 2. City councilman for Moab 3. Commander of the American Legion 4. Lifetime supporter of local school sports where he volunteered to work the chain crew at football games for 20 plus years
Ed was an exceptional athlete and his first love was baseball. Ed played from a young man until he retired from the local softball league at the age of 60. He always had the time to join his sons in a game of baseball or football or whatever they were playing. Ed played to win and wasn’t above changing the rules even when playing with his children or grandchildren.
Ed was an avid dancer as a young man, and after he married June, he taught her to dance, and from then on they tore up the dance floor for the next sixty or more years.
Edward and June were married for almost 64 years, and during those years they raised four children, Brent, Beverly Jean, Janice and Kim. He had thirteen grandchildren and eleven great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his parents, four brothers one sister and one grandson.
Edward was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in several callings. But his greatest joy was working on the church farm where he spent countless hours driving the tractor, and pruning the orchard.
Ed was a loving father, husband, friend, and will be greatly missed by his loving family.
Tributes1/14/2008 - I always think of Ed when I see a cool El Camino. - Katrina (Dickerson) Nielsen
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