Edward R. (“Ed” “Eddie”) Rodriguez, a genuinely true and kind man, a gentleman of remarkable personal dynamics and spirited passion for life, died unexpectedly on October 29, 2018, at the age of 71 in San Jose, CA. At his bedside were his dear daughter, Jordan, and, Allan, one of his dearest friends.
Edward is survived by his cherished family and friends: his loving wife, Lauretta Therese Blake; his beloved children, Jordan Jean, Damen Edward. and Cameron E. Rodriguez, and a few of his parents’ siblings. Also included are his CA cousins and in Chicago, IL his many sisters-in-law, bothers-in-law and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins-in-law. He was preceded in death by his younger brother, Michael Hector Rodriquez (Mike), his former wife and mother of his three children, Bonnie L. Cameron and his parents, Fran Cannon and Mike Rodriguez.
Generally known by his nicknames with friends and Edward R. Rodriquez by his family, Edward was born in Van Nuys, CA on July 23, 1947 as Rolando Edwardo Rodriguez (and for the fun of emphasis he grandly rolled his “R’s” when giving his full birth name). He was born to Efemia Fanny Gonzales (Fran) and Michael Angel Rodriguez (Mike) of Bertram, TX who were married in Bertram on June 8, 1946. They relocated to southern CA where Edward’s first elementary school was North Hollywood and where he was influenced by many teachers, some of whom were working in the film industry. His parents relocated in northern CA where his mother was glowingly pleased with the accomplishments of “her Edwardo’s” advanced education in the San Francisco Bay Area. She would often say that “her Edwardo loved learning and that his years at Cupertino High School were his fondest and most treasured years.” He made an overabundance of good friends there, especially his dear, lifelong friends and exceptional buddies, Doug McCune, Craig Nelson and Allan Courtney. Edward prized that extraordinary time too!
Graduation from the University of California, Santa Cruz was the steppingstone to his JD’77 degree from the University of Santa Clara University School of Law. He fastidiously enjoyed the practice of import export law with Fairchild Semiconductor. From there he launched his keen interest in Business Development and Management as well. Combined with his affection for traveling widely internationally he proudly established distinguished careers with Synertek, Inc., Samsung Semiconductor, SMOS, Inc., Symbios Logic and Orbit Semiconductor.
Edward was dedicated to his profession in the Silicon Valley to his country, to his family and to his friends making every effort to be with and among people. He was caring and supportive and liked to volunteer when needed. His sense of patriotic duty inspired his enlistment in the US Army to serve in Viet Nam during the polarizing Vietnamese War. Offered the optimal opportunity to be stationed in Europe instead of Viet Nam, Edward immediately rejected the idea. After the war the US Veterans Association recognized presumptive diseases and other health problems associated with exposure to Agent Orange/other herbicides during military service of our women and men while in Viet Nam. Like many other veterans Edward’s overall health was also detrimentally affected over the years due to exposure to Agent Orange. Yet, Edward never spoke of it. Overall, he would say that after experiencing Viet Nam, “I’ll never complain about anything.” Proudly and commendably, he served in the army from 1968-1970 in radio communications, was ranked SGT E5 and was awarded the Bronze Star medal. Edward quietly championed the lives of other veterans throughout his life.
Edward was a great athlete who loved all team sports like football and basketball, however he excelled and most enjoyed being a baseball player. He loved a good beer, good wines, good foods, insisting on sharing “the perfect bite” and in restaurants he often ordered an array of desserts to be sampled. He loved music, loved singing, loved films, loved to be on the dance floor where his flair and gift for partner dancing at Cupertino’s clubs, like “The What’s It”, “Sh-Boom’s,” and every other dance venue stood out. Women of all ages appreciated his charismatic talent and his emotional feeling for the music while gliding along with him on any dance floor. Edward loved books and was an avid reader who immersed himself in histories, biographies, and novels of the most illustrious authors on the best-seller’s lists. After an adventure trip to Costa Rica with friends and spouses, Edward rediscovered and developed an enthusiasm for golf and quickly became an excellent golfer, a really, fun fourth and relished the camaraderie of being a member of the Men's Golf League. Edward pinned down his first ace, his first “hole in one” at his home course in Silver Creek Country Club.
He left a far-reaching imprint wherever he went in nearly all hearts and souls even when he was straightforward with a strong opinion. Edward was admired for his wit, his warm personality, being a good sport with a willingness to joke around at his own expense. His appreciation for style and his dapper attire were seldom overlooked by anyone. He often, with his great sense of humor, amusingly noted that “Cary Grant looked and dressed -- a lot like him.” He was a gentleman who amazingly enjoyed shopping for clothing for his family and for himself, which always included his signature white and bright color shirts and classy socks. Starched white shirts fresh from the dry cleaners and pressed blue jeans were his first choice of dress on many occasions. (His golf attire was equally notable.) Not surprisingly, he had a carefully selected collection of the finest hand ties, and he was a whiz at tying a bow tie.
Edward made a strong impression, but the brightest and the best of Edward came from deep within. Primarily, Edward will always be the considerate soul remembered for his big, big heart, great laugh, spreading his laughter, being empathetic and sometimes tearful with other’s discomfort or joy. His knack for caring and sharing stories to uplift the lives of others was indeed compassion. He brought delight to the moment when he walked through the door with his uniquely own greetings and his magnetic essence as he shared as much delight and directed attention to others when he spoke individually with each person. In the scheme of life Edward could entertain a room full of people like no other!
Edward will be, undoubtedly, deeply missed and well-remembered by his friends and family who knew him well for his passion for life. And, in a twist of endings, now there will be many, many charming, touching, hilarious stories told about him and the moments that he made special and unforgettable. He left us so much and generously gave so much of himself! He was an all-encompassing, generous soul!
Family and friends celebrated Edward’s vibrant life with the rendering of US Army Military Funeral Honors and interment January 14, 2019, at the California Central Coast Veterans Cemetery, Parker Flats Road, Seaside, CA.
To continue to honor his presence among us, please share your time and/or means with veterans and children, as well as, as spending extra time with those you love.
If Edward could he’d gently be attempting to sooth our grieving and cheerfully ask, “Will you please ‘laugh and talk’ of me as though I were beside you? It was the best of times we had! I loved you!” (Irish quote adaptation). Thankfully, he told us so often while here that he loved us! He loved his life, his people and he believed in the best of life!