Edward Albert English
October 22, 1928 – May 6, 2020
Edward “Ted” English passed away at his home in Atascadero on May 6, 2020 at the age of 91. Ted was born Edward Albert English on October 22, 1928 in Toronto, Canada, to Edward John English and Elizabeth Landess Kilpatrick. He spent many of his early years living and working at English’s Boat House and as a lifeguard on Toronto Island. He was proud of his Durnan and Hanlan family legacies in the sport of rowing that included his great-uncle and hero, Ned Hanlan, World Champion oarsman in the 1880’s. Ted graduated from the prestigious Jarvis Collegiate Institute in Toronto before moving with his parents to Los Angeles, California in 1949. Ted married Sylvia June Clawson in 1950 shortly before enlisting in the Army where he proudly served in the Korean War as part of the “Remington Raiders” while stationed at the Presidio Army Base in San Francisco. While in San Francisco, Ted and Sylvia welcomed the first of eight children. Following the Korean War, Ted and Sylvia settled in Norwalk, California where Ted was known for his vigorous community involvements, from the political to the personal, including taking his Volkswagen van full of neighborhood children to the local ice-skating rink weekly. He also got his children active in competitive swimming, published a kitchen tabletop, but professional quality swimming magazine, the ‘Sunstroke’, and helped organize and run the swimming program for the 1968 Watts Summer Games. In 1966, Ted heroically rescued and resuscitated a young girl during a flash flood in Colorado. Ted kept his rowing passion alive with the Long Beach Rowing Association, and was often seen on the water by daybreak well into his 70’s. Ted worked most of his career as an insurance broker, most significantly working for the George Elkins Company in Beverly Hills, and subsequently created his own firm, where he managed insurance needs for the elite in the entertainment industry. His private stories of celebrity escapades delighted his family for years. In 1997, Ted and Sylvia pulled up in roots in Southern California and move to a six-acre hillside property in west Atascadero, California. Ted brought his passion for rowing with him and was instrumental in the formation of the San Luis Obispo Rowing Club transforming an old, run down County owned snack-shack at Santa Margarita Lake into a fine boathouse that has attracted scores of folks to the sport of rowing in SLO county. For many years, Ted also volunteered with the San Luis Obispo Library Association, often serving as Chair of the annual book sale. Through his participation in the book sale, he met new friends and fellow members, including the self-titled clutch, “The Dull Men’s Club”. Mostly, Ted will be remembered by his family for his interest in early Americana music, his 78 record and classic book collection, his sharp and witty mind, but most importantly, for the care and devotion to his disabled daughter, Christine, whom Ted provided care for until just months before his passing. Ted was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Sylvia, and is survived by his children, Victoria (Ian - deceased), Scott (Debra), Deborah, Christine, Geoff (Celeste-deceased), Brian, Catherine (Mark) and Bruce (Joanne). Ted is also survived by thirty-three grandchildren and great grandchildren. As Ted would often say, “There will always be an English!” Donations in the name of Ted English, may be made to the San Luis Obispo Rowing Club at P. O. Box 1587 Arroyo Grande CA 93421 or at www.slorc.org. A memorial service will be scheduled in the future when gatherings are again permitted.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Edward Albert English
May 22, 2020
I am very sorry to hear the sad news of Ted's passing.
As the great-grand nephew of the world's first sports superstar, Ned Hanlan, Ted was an amazing source of rich lived and family history of the Toronto Islands and the Lake Ontario waters surround.
One of Ted's legacies is the Toronto Island History Project website that he and I cobbled together, with wonderful support and encouragement from the Toronto Island Connections group and, of course, Toronto Islanders current and former...
There, amongst many historical posting deriving from Ted's personal collections and clippings, you can see a video of the 2016 unveiling of the Heritage Toronto Historical Plaque commemorating English's Boathouse - Ted is well featured.
Eric Wood Zhelka
Councillor, District of Oak Bay, BC, Canada
and former Toronto Islander.
May 16, 2020
Ted started a sweep rowing program at Long Beach Rowing Association when I was there, I think in the 1990s. I participated on weekends. I appreciated all that Ted did for the group. That was an example of Ted’s strengths. He saw something that could be done and he took action, and was quite dedicated to make it work.
May 12, 2020
Although I must have encountered Ted before, my earliest really functional memory goes back to my Uncle Lee Miller's gas station in the San Fernando Valley in the late 1950's, the long ago era of full service and 25 cent a gallon gasoline. Ted would buzz up from the south in his WV Beetle, a vehicle which reflected his Scotchman's nature I gathered, on weekends to join a somewhat nepotistic work force which included Lee Junior and myself (see photo). So to an impressive curriculum vitae you can add pump jockey and grease monkey. With a growing family and before he started selling insurance to Hollywood A- Listers, Ted certainly needed to augment his income to some degree. However,because the Valley, was still a bit ranchy in those day, our clientele numbered several big time horse opera movie stars like Crash Corrigan and Arthur Hunnicut, (really!) and Ted might have signed some of them up for all I know. Ted's dry sense of humor always made him fun to work with and I missed him a lot when he was finally able to give up that part time gig for good. I didn't get to see Ted that often afterward, even though our Moms were neighbors and drinking buddies in their later years, but I always enjoyed it greatly when I did and I miss him once again, very much.
May 12, 2020
Always got a kick out of Ted. He always wanted a cup of tea but didn't care if the bag had been used. He would use the same bag until he was only drinking water. He stayed with us some and was so easy to please. We'll miss him greatly but we know he's with Sylvia now and they are so happy.
Chip and Dayna Diamond
May 11, 2020
We are really going to miss our dear cousin, Ted, his brightness, wit, kindness and steadfastness. We looked forward to his visits when he stopped by on his way from Atascadero to L.A. to see family, to go to an antique book faire, or for a medical visit. He would quote poetry, tell very funny stories and discuss our shared Toronto history. We send love and sympathy to his children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren in whom his great qualities are reflected.
Love, Chip and Dayna