Fredrick Edwin “Ed” Denniston was born in Seattle,
Washington, on January 25, 1922, to Albert and Mary (Day) Denniston.
He grew up in Portland and Eugene, Oregon, and he graduated from
the University of Oregon and later, the University of San Francisco
Denniston was working in Hawaii, as a construction
worker at the Honolulu Airport in December 1941, when Pearl Harbor
was bombed. Not long after that he injured his back and came home
to Oregon, joining the US Army Air Corps as a navigator. After World
War II, while working at US Steel in San Francisco, Ed met and
married the love of his life, Anne Edwardson. They married just
before his birthday, on January 22, 1949.
For many years the couple lived in the San Francisco
Bay area. From 1952 to 1966 Ed held the position of Head of the
Tax Department for the Fiberboard Corporation. In 1966 Ed was offered
the position of Vice President – Head of Taxes for Evans Products Company
and the couple moved to Portland, Oregon.
After retiring, the couple moved to Black Butte
Ranch in 1985. Ed’s love of the Ranch got him involved with helping out,
using his unique skills and training in tax law. Ed served on the
Ranch Homeowner’s Association Board of Directors from 1980
to 1982. Ed was actively involved with the “turnover” when
the homeowner’s association took over ownership and control
of Ranch common property from the developer, Brooks Resources.
Brooks Resources Chairman, Mike
Hollern said of
Ed, “I remember
him on the BBR Association Board as a member who delighted in fine
print, but who was honest and straight and always had the best
interests of the broader BBR community in mind.”
Denniston also played an active and very useful
part in helping the Black Butte Ranch Police department become
a service district. This was a difficult task, as Black Butte Ranch
was not an incorporated city. The state legislature had never before
issued a law allowing for the formation of a police service district
outside an incorporated city.
Denniston is fondly remembered by Black Butte Ranch
General Manager Loy Helmly, summing up his thoughts as follows:
“Ed Denniston was a great resource for Ranch Management. He
was an original member of the Association Board of Directors and
personally participated with a group of the other property owners
in updating the Master Design (the Ranch’s primary governance
document) after the Ranch was purchased from Brooks Resources. When
questions arouse about Ranch history, governance or just ‘why
do we do things the way we do,” Ed was able to help. If he
couldn’t remember it precisely, he had a general idea where
to look for it and, with his own private library of documents
that he had accumulated over the years, he could always find
the exact information needed to answer the question.
“Often, when we staff members would draft a ballot document
or a business form, we would ask Ed to scrutinize it. He had
an eye for detail and he willingly assisted us in fine tuning our information
before presenting it to the Board or property owners.
“In his later years, if we made the same
mistake twice on a form or some correspondence, he would playfully
chide us about it and we would make the correction, promising
not to make the mistake a third time. “He was a valuable
sounding-board that we enjoyed working with and, to this day,
we often ask: ‘I wonder what Ed would
do with this situation?’
“But the most enjoyable memory we have of Ed, was that he and
his wife, Anne, would bring us homemade fudge at Christmas time,
flavored with a hint of Grand Marnier liqueur! Now that was a
Ed donated to various charities throughout his
life, including Air Life, Habitat for Humanity and the Bend Symphony.
He brought his tax law skills to the Black Butte Ranch Historical
Society, helping it become a 501c(3) corporation. That organization
today is Sisters Country Historical Society.
Ed passed away on November 9, 2003.