Life Event Center at Florida Memorial & Florida Memorial Gardens
5950 S US Highway 1, Rockledge, FL
July 13, 1946 – April 24, 2020
Edward J. Waterstradt, 73, passed away peacefully in his sleep on Friday, April 24, 2020, from heart failure.
Born in Detroit, Michigan, Ed moved to Brevard County the first time in 2000 from Annadale, NJ. He ventured out to live other places but returned to the place he loved, Florida. Ed was a proud veteran of the U. S. Air Force and a Vietnam Veteran. He eventually retired from Internap Network Services in Seattle, WA, as the Regional Director of Data Center Operations.
Ed is a member of the American Legion Post Unit 79 in New Port Richey, FL. He is also a member of the St. Petersburg Museum of History and a season ticket holder for the Tampa Bay Rays.
Ed’s survivors include his loving wife, Rhonda Waterstradt (Stephen and Josh Cahill, Molly Belle); son, Bryan Waterstradt; daughter, Kerry Shoemaker (Brian); brothers, Bob Waterstradt (Marsha, Matt, Chris), John Waterstradt (Debra, Katie [Mike], Jeffery [Rachel], Carly, Lennon, Tom Waterstradt (Gay, Kurt [Ashley], Chase [Menhati]; sisters, Susan Gogola (Andy, Steve [Eva], Michael [Tracy, Ryan], Tommy, Kathleen Waterstradt; aunts, Beverly Waterstradt, Pat Waterstradt; grandchildren, Kendal Shoemaker, Soren Cahill, Iola Cahill, Keegan Shoemaker, Kelsie Shoemaker, Nikoletta Pacheco.
Ed had a long and very successful career in communications and data center operations. His passions were his family, cars (of which he owned 48 in his lifetime), work and hockey (especially the Tampa Bay Lightning). Ed possessed numerous strengths, but his generosity and ability to mentor young business people were two that are most notable. Ed loved telling some of his “road warrior” stories; his laughter was genuine and infectious. Ed will be dearly missed by many …. Family, friends, and colleagues
A celebration of Ed’s life will be held at 3pm on August 1, 2020, at the Life Event Center at Florida Memorial in Rockledge, FL.
Saturday, August 1, 2020
August 1, 2020
On this day of the celebration of the life of Ed Waterstradt, I would like to offer my prayers of comfort to his family and friends. I only met Ed a few time but from the tributes of his family and friends he was an amazing person. His memories will be cherished by all that knew him.
July 29, 2020
Ed was my uncle. When I was very young, he had decided that he was going to teach me to skate and play hockey. Here I was, the nerdy nephew who liked Star Wars and comic books, but I was going to be great! He was so enthusiastic about it, of course I shook my head, yes… hockey… It was a lot like the scene in A Christmas Story when Santa suggests to Ralphie “How about…a football?” Sorry to say, it was probably one of the only times he didn’t over-achieve on a goal he set.
My uncle was opinionated (I got a lot of advice), set in his ways (legendary), and talkative (like I said, I got a lot of advice). But through it all was this easy charm and this sort of instant like-ability. Hard to put in words; was it his energy? his sense of humor? his laugh? I can’t quite put my finger on it. Whatever it was, it was very Waterstradt.
Throughout the years, he was always kind to me and showed interest in whatever it was I was up to, even when it was something he wouldn’t be interested in (see above.. Star Wars vs hockey). In more recent years, that interest extended to my family as well. I can still remember the very serious talk he had with my 9 year old son regarding their shared favorite restaurant Carrabba’s.
I didn’t get to see him often, but I will miss him. I had a great Uncle Ed!
July 23, 2020
"One day, someone will walk into your life and make you see why it never worked out with anyone else."
Babe, I can finally add my thoughts to your page. The pain of your loss is immense but the memories bring me comfort, warmth and joy. I'm so glad you walked into my life, but our time together was far too short. Your generosity, sense of humor and commitment to your work were the characteristics I noticed in you when we first met...then it was your support of me, the love you showed for both your family and mine, and your genuine love for me that caused me to fall in love with you. You were my champion, my lover and my protector. I always knew our love was unconditional nourished by the mutual respect and interests we shared. I miss you terribly but know that you're at peace and sharing some vodka with Linda and Phil with Maggie in your lap. I feel your loving warmth constantly and know you are still loving and protecting me. Thank you for walking into my life and making it far better than it would've been without you.
July 21, 2020
I have only met Ed a few times while you were visiting Kerry, Brian, and Kendal. You always were smiling and having a good time. That legacy you have passed on to your amazing children who miss you deeply. My condolences to Ed’s family and friends. Remember:
“something that is loved is never lost”
- Toni Morrison
He lives on in you Brian and Kerry!!!
Love you guys!!!
July 19, 2020
It has taken me awhile to post my memories and thoughts as I have worked through the grieving process.
Dad was very special, loving, caring, generous, and will forever be missed but ways in my heart.
When I met Kerry I knew right away she was a genuine, caring, thoughtful and had a beautiful heart. I can tell you that was a combination of both Ed and Marie. Ed loved Kerry so much that he flew to meet me immediately when he heard we were "serious" and I might be "the one".
We went to dinner and shared vodka tonics together. He learned about me and having a son (Keegan) and daughter (Kelsie) from a previous marriage so he was concerned. But we were connected by sports and that would be always something we would talk about.
Over years he and I understood each other as we shared the same values for our children. He treated both Keegan and Kelsie like his grandchildren and always remembered their birthdays, celebrated their graduations. And always sat down with them to talk and discuss their futures. He cared and loved them dearly.
When Kerry and I had Kendal he said he never expected to hold a baby granddaughter. His life changed forever with joy, pride, and another warm place in his heart.
Ed always treated me like his son. He would never send a card that said "son-in-law" but always cards that said "son". We hugged, I would give him kisses on his cheek (he would say yuck) and laugh about it, and he would tell me "I never get the good ones" which was his way of saying I Love you!
Well he did get a good one and I promised him I would always love, cherish, respect and treat his Ker-bear exactly as he would.
Dad thank you for always loving me, being a father, and being there whenever I needed to ask a question, talk, or just have a dance with you during our dance parties.
You will always be in my heart and our family is better for having you as our dad, sharing your life stories, best practices, and how to be a better person.
Rest in peace Dad. I love you.
July 5, 2020
My deepest sympathy to Ed's family. I met Ed as my neighbor in Trinity, FL. Soon after moving into the neighborhood, he also became a good friend. Ed was always there to help if I needed something done around my house that he could help with. One of my fondest memories of Ed was of him calling me to ask if I had any extra ice - he and Bob had ran out of ice! Gone too soon - Rest In Peace, Ed.
June 25, 2020
Wishing you, and all who loved Ed, comfort and peace.
Jan Giroux (Nickason)
June 16, 2020
Dear Rhonda and family,
I did not know Ed personally but I do know Rhonda and how happy she was at our 50th high school reunion relating her life with Ed in Florida. It appears he was a man who touched many lives and will be missed by all. May the peace and comfort of knowing you are in the hearts and thoughts of many people help you during this sad time. With sympathy,
June 11, 2020
Dear Rhonda and family. I am so very sorry to hear of Ed's passing. I first met Ed at the AT&T Dublin OH Training Center. We worked together for a couple of years. Ed moved on to New Jersey and we lost track of each other. We moved to Florida in 1997 and made contact again through a mutual friend. Ed hired me to do so e work for the company he was working for. We developed a pretty strong friendship and I always enjoyed our time together. He always had a good story to tell. I will miss him greatly!
May 3, 2020
Ever have a boss who lead by example, empowered his people and along the way becomes a mentor and lifelong friend?
That boss was Ed. I was lucky to have had the opportunity to learn from and be inspired by him.
Ed was a breaker of barriers and conventional rules. He took a huge professional risk by entrusting me with his beloved Toronto Operations in a male dominant industry.
In true Ed fashion, he was following his passion in giving women the same opportunity to succeed.
I am grateful and honored to have called Ed my mentor and friend. He will be missed.
Until we meet again, boss! Please give Phil a hug for me.
May 1, 2020
Ed, gave me my first job in the communications industry at Adelphia Business solutions, I applied for a warehouse position because that’s what my job was in the Army but I was surprised when he called me to offer me a technicians position. Ed asked me why I was applying for a warehouse position when I had a BS degree in telecommunications, I told him that I didn’t have any experience and figure no one would hire me, he told me that he hired me because he was hiring a person that would fit the team and that he would teach me the job. I remember one time when our Toronto Manager had resigned, he asked me to travel with him and cover the site until we could hire a new manager, well I spend 42 days in Toronto but around day 20th he called me and told me that he needed to eat American bacon so we rented a car and drove to Buffalo just to eat breakfast at Dennys…we also stopped at the Casinos. Ed, was always coaching and mentoring even at sports events, he didn’t miss an opportunity to teach. Thanks Ed for your friendship and your mentoring. You will be missed
Robert / Bob Waterstradt
April 30, 2020
Ed was not only my brother, but my best friend. Some years I think I spent more time with Ed then I did my wife and sons. A part of me left with Ed. There was no one like him. I enjoyed every time we talked or visited or traveled. I have so many Ed stories (some even publishable). One of many: We both had a long time period where we both traveled all the time. We kept in contact, but rarely were in the same town on the same date. One of those times we both were in Chicago for a few days, and Ed wanted to take my team to a favorite restaurant of his (No, not Carrabba’s). My team was having a happy hour at the hotel, waiting on Ed, when I notice one of my team had changed out of work clothes. I told him that he had to change, Ed would not let him join us the way he looked. The fairly crowded bar overheard my explanation of Ed. It was pouring rain outside, and I told him that my Brother would come in from the parking lot thru the rain and look like he just put on new clothes and shoes. Unfortunately, the team member made a bet with me that if that happened, he would buy a round of drinks for us to have while he changed. I had never seen Ed embarrassed before, but when he walked into the bar, the whole crowd exploded in laughter and applause. Ed stood clueless, with perfectly shined shoes. Solid crease in pant legs, un-wrinkled sport coat, perfect tie and shirt……Not a drop of water or a single thing out of place (including the few hairs he still had). I will never stop missing and loving my Best Friend, Ed.
April 30, 2020
Ed and I worked together at Switch and Data for about 10 years. I’ll always remember his perfectly ironed shirts. He ironed them himself and was very proud of the many compliments he received. He protected and defended his employees with vigor and was widely respected. That is demonstrated by the number of Switch and Data people he stayed in touch with over the years. We had many dinners together while working on the road and he sure did love a good steak. Ed generously shared his much loved Tampa Bay Lightning tickets with my daughter, Laura. He will be missed.
April 30, 2020
Ed was a beloved brother. He was my oldest brother so I always looked up to him my whole life. I especially remember a time when I was about 7 years old. I was out riding my new bike. A group of boys came buy and were trying to take my bike from me. All of a sudden there was my big brother Ed. Boy did those boys take off when he started to defend me! I have such good memories of all the good times we had attending baseball and hockey games which we both loved. Ed always told me he hoped he would live long enough to watch my Grandson Ryan (who's a great baseball pitcher) pitch in his first college baseball game some day. Unfortunately Ed will have to watch that from heaven now. I love you Ed and will miss you terribly. Your sister Susan