BRADENTON — If it was made of steel, Ed Deane could fix it.
Farming machinery. Tropicana equipment. Boat engines. The list goes on.
Founded in 1912 by his father, Arthur, Mr. Deane made Deane Machine a Bradenton institution for 80 years.
“Whatever came out of there we all called a ‘Deane Machine Special,’” said daughter Karren Shupe. “It could last forever.”
So will her father’s legacy.
Mr. Deane passed Tuesday. He was 86.
“He’s the last of his kind,” said sister-in-law Rona Livingston.
A Bradenton native, Mr. Deane and wife Billie Earle were married 65 years and raised five daughters.
Years ago in a Father’s Day poem, they hailed his qualities like decisiveness, kindness, reliability, strength and understanding.
His patience, too.
“It was quite a family of females, but he was our inspiration,” Shupe said. “He had a work ethic that’s been passed down to all of us.”
A 1942 Bradenton High alum and World War II Navy veteran who later started Deane Yacht Inc., Mr. Deane was chosen 1984 Business Man of the Year by the Manatee Chamber of Commerce.
He was a founding member of Trinity United Methodist Church, and a member of the Hernando DeSoto Historical Society since 1956.
Mr. Deane served in many capacities — Crewe, event chairman, Hern, president and board member. He received an Honorary Life Membership, the society’s highest honor.
“He was quiet and unassuming, a man of integrity and respect held in the highest regard,” said Vernon DeSear, a Conquistador Historical Foundation board member and Honorary Life Member, too. “He was one of the major influences in the society.”
Besides his daughter, Karren, and wife, Billie Earle, Mr. Deane is survived by daughters Gail Morrison, Terrie Langford, Edie Watson and Bonnie Goodman, 13 grandchildren, 11 great-grandchildren and one great-great grandchild.
Funeral arrangements are pending and being handled by Griffith-Cline Funeral Home.
Vin Mannix, local columnist, can be reached at 745-7055.