Few or none of you may know him, even though he was quite a fixture in the 4-wheel-drive scene for many years. But those who did know him either loved or hated him... most the former.
"The FAMOUS! Mr. Ed" (as he was called in his Mr. Ed's Excellent Adventures videos) passed away this dreary weekend. My version of the news is limited, but he apparently died from pneumonia. Nonetheless, a prominent figure, Ed Melendy, is gone.
This man was like a father to me for a long time. He was one of the first wheelers I met in AZ that was nice to a stupid little punk kid in a red Jeep CJ-7. He took me under his wing and taught me the polite and responsible way to use my 4wd vehicle, and got me involved in organized wheeling. I could never show him my gratitude for that.
What I am most appreciative of is the night I called him at 3AM in the middle of a winter rainstorm with a busted water pump, 20 miles from my home (30 from his in the opposite direction) and my wife out of town. His only question when I said I needed help was "Where are you, and do you have some dry clothes." He was at my location in less than 45 minutes with his trailer and some hot coffee. He stopped by the next day to help me replace the pump, running for parts when it was discovered that the pump was not the only thing needing replaced.
I was Glenn-RedCJ to him, as he could remember you better if he had a reference to you vehicle. Otherwise, you couldn't trust him to be able to know you without your rig around.
Sad day for me, even more so, since I just talked to him a few weeks ago and he was in great spirits.
R.I.P Mr. Ed