Published 8:17 am Friday, March 31, 2023
Sept. 1, 1938-March 25, 2023
Edwin O. Dwan passed away Saturday, March 25, 2023, at Corewell Health Hospital in Niles, Michigan.
Edwin O. Dwan was born to Orville and Mable DeLong Dwan of St. Joseph, Michigan on Sept. 1, 1938. As a toddler, Ed began his life as an adventurer. At the age of two, he ran away to Potter’s Drug Store that was a block and a half from home for “treats” that his father normally purchased for him there on the weekend. No treats that day! The parents were called, picked him up and thus began the life of Ed being tied up as a young child to the clothesline playing in the backyard. Now, he began the real life of an adventurer.
Kudos go to Dorothy Buffham, one of his elementary school teachers and a great influence on the rest of his life. She introduced him to reading adventure stories which fueled his imagination forever. She became a very loving family friend who was called “Granny”.
Ed attended St. Joseph schools, worked at Dwan’s Canning Company during the summers in his teen years. Later he worked for Bob Howard in the high-end stereo business and was exposed to a wide assortment of music which he loved including jazz, classical, and opera.
On Oct. 26, 1957, he married Elizabeth Miller, a city girl, from Benton Harbor. Together, they had three children…Dennis, Denise, and Patrick. In 1960, Ed and Elizabeth became co-owners of Dwan’s Fruit Farm in Dowagiac. They raised a variety of fruits and vegetables for 27 years. Ed loved farming and was a genius at innovating new concepts on farm equipment. Ed enjoyed doing all the mechanical work on his own equipment and vehicles. In 1979, he was named “Conservation Farmer of the Year.”
In 1981, Ed became involved with Burnette Packing Cooperative, Inc. as president. Later in 1984, it became Burnette Foods, Incorporated and he worked there as plant manager until he formed his own consulting firm, Apple Research.
Ed loved the outdoors. A boy with toys from the day he was born, he loved racing his motorcycle along with his son, Dennis, at the local MX tracks. He took many summer trips alone to Alaska on his street bike enjoying the back road scenery of America and Canada. In the winter, it was a yearly trip with six to eight snowmobile friends to wherever there was snow in the U.S.A. or Canada. Ed and Liz also enjoyed many trips to Europe and different parts of the States, especially the state of Washington.
Ed and Elizabeth also enjoyed many Saturdays tailgating and viewing games in East Lansing along with many MSU friends, especially Howard and Jane Clupper. Both Dennis and Denise graduated from MSU, and he was enormously proud of them.
Ed will be remembered for his unbelievable knack of telling entertaining travel stories, his Irish wit, his high standard of work ethic, his Christmas eggnog, and his willingness to help and teach people. His free sense of adventure allowed him not to be tied up to a clothesline again.
Ed is survived by his wife, Elizabeth; son, Dennis (Tami) of Edmonds, Washington; daughter, Denise Wadley (Steve) of Benton Harbor, Michigan; grandchildren; Megan Dwan Parker and Kaitlyn Dwan Grant both of Washington; great-granddaughter, Kennady Parker; brother-in-law, Don Anstey; along with numerous nieces, nephews and generations of friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his son Patrick M. Dwan, and sister Janice Anstey.
Honoring Ed’s wishes cremation has taken place and there will be no public visitation or service. Those wishes will be honored. Memorial contributions may be made to the American Cancer Society or to the donor’s choice in Edwin O. Dwan’s name. Arrangements were entrusted to Clark Chapel-Starks Family Funeral Homes, 405 Center Street, Dowagiac. Those wishing to share a memory of Ed online may do so at www.clarkch.com