ForeverMissed

This memorial website was created in the memory of our loved one, Edward Parnell, 85, born on May 8, 1926 and passed away on August 11, 2011. We will remember him forever.

PLEASE SEE UPDATES AND SERVICE INFORMATION UNDER "HIS LIFE" TAB.

NEW UPDATE: SATURDAY, OCTOBER 22, 2011

Posted by Bradford Barnet on August 11, 2016
I think these yearly emails are a nice reminder to take a moment to appreciate those we have lost. For many on here Ed was a friend, a father, a husband, a role model. For me Ed is important because of the impact he made on those that I care about- Will, Gigi, Mimi.... And also because his sudden passing was a lesson for me that you don't always get to say goodbye or leave when you are expecting, so make sure you say the important things today rather than tomorrow. People make impacts on our lives everyday, that's Ed's for me. Getting that email is a way for me to be sure to remember an important piece of my friends, but also to remember that lesson.
Posted by John Tomaselli on May 8, 2015
A flyover across Washington, DC featuring 56 vintage planes in 15 formations honored the 70th anniversary of the victory in Europe today. It also happens to be Ed's birthday. Lisa and I visited Ed at Arlington today. We were fortunate to witness the flyover from Ed's grave site. It was a beautiful May day in DC. The planes flew in front of us before banking left across Memorial Bridge and down Independence Avenue. As some may recall, Ed was to have had a flyover during his service but the poor weather conditions of that day, kept the jets grounded in Norfolk. Although the event was to commemorate VE Day and those that sacrificed so much during WWII, we were certain there was a bit of tribute reserved for this special Marine Aviator who served our nation in Korea and Vietnam. Especially, when the Missing Man Formation flew by our vantage point.

A few years have passed since the day Ed left all of us, and the day of that driving rain during his burial. I'm certain, if like me, you all feel that he is never far, always in our thoughts, and continues to guide and lead us forward in our own personal journey through life.

Two nights ago, I was at a business dinner with four people that I'm just beginning to become acquainted. A good conversation was being had with our meal. Somehow, the banter got around to a sharing of stories, and then on to "unusual questions" we've all been asked at times across our careers --- you know, like during an interview you're asked, "if you were a tree, what kind would you be, etc". All of our heads were shaking as we grinned. One of the dinner guests then brought forward the one, "Dead or alive, if you could have dinner with one person, who would it be?". That same question was then put to each dinner guest.

"Jesus", followed by several other famous persons, was put forth.
As you have already anticipated, when it came my turn, I simply stated, "my father-in-law, Brigadier Edward A. Parnell".

Naturally, this answer created a pause, followed by curiosity, and then an inquiry as to "why". I conveyed to them the type, and the character of the man we all love. The gentlemen across the table assumed I must not have had the opportunity to spend much time with Ed. He asked me how many dinners I had with Ed. I told him, "Hundreds if not a thousand. Perhaps a slight exaggeration, but certainly many, many more than I could have ever had hoped. But for me, to have one more dinner with him, would be more than precious and beyond wonderful".

I then told them that my only fear about my answer, is that it is most likely the same answer of thousands of people who knew Ed. If that be the case, I can only pray I'm not at the end of the line, because I certainly will go hungry as I await my turn in that chow line behind all the many ahead.

I left the dinner that night knowing four people had just been introduced to the General. How fortunate they had just become. Almost... almost... as fortunate as we many, that shook his hand, had a chat, shared a smile, and broke bread with him. What a great gift his birth has been to all of us that were privileged to have crossed his path.

Happy Birthday, Ed! Thanks for the gift of your ever lasting friendship and presence! Though you are with us always, we miss you!
_____________________

"He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often and loved much; who has gained the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who has left the world better than he found it, whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; who has never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it; who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had; whose life was an inspiration; whose memory a benediction." ~Bessie Stanley, 1905
Posted by Joe Kern on August 11, 2014
One evening this week we had the family for dinner. Hogfish was featured. It brought memories of Ed and Nancy's love of fishing and of the huge Hogfish they caught off Tilloo Cay in the Bahamas. Catching Hogfish with rod and reel is very unusual.  It was the largest one l know of caught that way. We all participated in a delicious dinner thanks ti Ed and Nancy.
Posted by Andrea Broadbent on August 12, 2013
Ted and I miss you every day because every day we see, hear or say something that reminds us of you. Ted misses you on the phone when interesting news occurs and he knows you 2 would have the same reaction! I miss you for how much you cared about my academic and personal achievements. The photos posted here in Aspen, Niagara Falls and Florida are our fondest memories of us being with you.
Posted by Steve Frei on August 12, 2013
Hard to believe that it has been 2 years since we lost this great man. Think I will have a chocolate milkshake in honor of him and his family today. Just wish I could do it at Dumsers. Be well in heaven General, Husband, Father and Da Da. You will be forever missed.
Posted by Shirley Foote on August 11, 2013
I still can't believe we have lost such a wonderful man. We miss him with as much feeling of loss as two years ago. I miss my friend Nancy too....we four had such good times together for so many fun years. I am happy we made so many good memories, because in the end, thats all we have. I know that Ed is loved as much where he is now as by all those that loved him here. love to his family
Posted by Linda Traenkle on May 8, 2012
Dearest Ed, thinking of you and keeping you always in our hearts. Much love to Nancy, Linda and Harry
Posted by Joe Kern on September 11, 2011
Ed was one of a kind, a truly nice man, It was a blessing and a privilege to be his friend. Our fondest memories of the Bahamas are linked to Ed and Nancy and their love of the islands, the sea and fishing, And most of all the camaraderie.

We will all miss the “Gaffer”
Posted by Nancy Cassell on September 10, 2011
although i didnt really know him well, the few times that we did speak i truly enjoyed his wisdom and words...heaven has received another angel and i know that he will be looking down on all of us...i pray for you nancy and family...always in my thoughts...RIP Ed...
Posted by Lynn Johnson on August 23, 2011
My entire family was saddened by Eds passing.He had the ability to relate to multiple generations.He had a quiet strength,a gentle soul and a profound love of family.He had the "right stuff" that we can learn from his generation.He will be missed.
Posted by Shirley Foote on August 23, 2011
JIM AND I ARE STILL IN SHOCK AND GRIEVING THE LOSS OF OUR DEAR DEAR FRIEND...WORDS CANT WORK,CANT CONVEY, CANT MAKE A DIFFERENCE IN HOW WE FEEL. WE ARE AT SUCH A LOSS OF THIS DEAR MAN. ITS TRULY THE END OF AN ERA FOR SUCH A TRUE GENTLEMAN. OUR HEARTS ARE BROKEN.
Posted by Gretchen Collins on August 19, 2011
Dada, I miss you terribly. Thank you for being my mentor, advocate and loving Dad. Mostly, thank you for the joy you brought to my mother. I will try very hard to be the happy, vital woman you knew I could be!
Posted by Tom Kelso on August 19, 2011
I have never met a more outstanding person in my entire life. Ed was a tremendous roll model for everyone. The world is a much diminshed place with his passing. My best to his entire family.
Posted by Will Collins on August 18, 2011
A tribute from the UMUC Alumni Association:
http://www.umucalumni.org/
Posted by Kathy Tomaselli on August 17, 2011
Very rarely in life does that fellow come along that you know by his achievements his core is made of rock and hardened sinew, yet the only expression you see by him is humility, selflessness, and gentle kindness. His example gave us all something to strive for. Flip Tomaselli
Posted by Hazel Carson on August 17, 2011
I had the honor and pleasure of knowing Ed and Nancy for eleven years working as their housekeeper. I was sorry to know about his passing. I have the greatest respect for Ed and I will truly miss working for him and his generous nature and remarkable sense of humor. Janet & Benny
Posted by Lisa Tomaselli on August 16, 2011
AS SAID SO ELOQUENTLY BY SKIP COLLINS: "He was a great man. A joy to be around. A real family man, helpful to all. An elder statesman. The embodiment of all that is good about America. He died doing what he loved and he will be missed and remembered. Peace."
Posted by Lisa Tomaselli on August 16, 2011
FROM FRIEND RICHARD TOYNBEE: "Ed was my CO w/1stMAW in DaNang in 1968. He was a fine man and the finest officer I ever served with. Still remember his grin when he surprised me with my promotion to Sgt.:) I know the "Sky Pilot" has Ed under his wing now. Semper Fi"
Posted by Linda Traenkle on August 15, 2011
As I watch all the wonderful photos passing by on this page, it is obvious how loved Ed is and how much he has meant to so very many people around the world. Missing you so, El Guapo. Catch a wave for me in heaven. Linda
Posted by Robert Barr on August 15, 2011
Dear Nancy and family,
We hope the many happy experiences you shared with Ed over the years will give you peace in the days ahead. He was a kind and loving man and will rest in peace with fellow loyal Americans. God Bless You. Jean & Bob
Posted by Lee Douglas on August 15, 2011
The General was a true gentleman and the kindest person I have ever met.While living there for a year, I marveled at his calm, kind demeanor,always ready to help, with so much patience.My heart is saddened by your loss. We will miss you "Gentle Giant". Rest in peace!
Posted by Craig And Jean Cyr on August 15, 2011
We just met Ed & Nancy this past winter as neighbors in Vero Beach. We didn't know Ed well, but thoroughly enjoyed his company and looking forward to this coming winter. Nancy, take comfort in knowing that now you have a special guardian angel watching over you.
Posted by Lisa Tomaselli on August 14, 2011
Oh Dada, my heart is broken and there is a void that can never be filled. You mean the world to me and I thank you for giving me your fatherly love and affection. Our home, your "favorite Hotel" will never be the same without you. You are my sweetest angel now and always. ILYVM
Posted by Connie Cadwell on August 14, 2011
No words to express my great deep sorrow.A great Gentle, kind, caring, love of country, family, and friends.Ed loved and lived life to its fullest every day!I am blessed to have known and loved Ed's life.God Bless, Connie Warren Cadwell
Posted by Pauline Grant on August 14, 2011
It is very rare to meet someone fleetingly and that they make so great an impression. Ed was one of those people. We will remember him fondly and with great affection. Rest in peace, Ed and may your memory be a blessing to all who love you.P&R x
Posted by Will Collins on August 13, 2011
Grandfather Ed,
  You were one of the greatest men I've even know. You leave a legacy behind that will be hard to match. But I'm going to try my best! I promise that I will take care of Mimi for you. WHOA, PONYSOLDIER!! I love you, Will
Posted by Bradford Barnet on August 13, 2011
Never having grandparents of my own, I looked at Ed and Mimi as an example of the grandparents I always wish I had. Heaven just got a good man. Ed seemed to celebrate life and now lets celebrate his. I pray for the family and am thankful Mimi has loved ones around. God Bless.
Posted by Janice Greene on August 13, 2011
Jim and I are shocked to hear the news. We send to Nancy and her family our deepest sympathy. Ed was a delightful person and we were so fortunate to have known him here in Vero Beach, FL
Posted by Ethan Tomaselli on August 13, 2011
I'm really going to miss the DADA. He was the best man i have ever known without a doubt. I never heard a word of gossip or evil come from his mouth. My brother explained to me that his soul was just too big, too young for his body. Heaven is blessed to have him.
Posted by Elaine Winward on August 13, 2011
Cousin Eddie and I spoke in February when my father (Quentin) passed away at age 90 (a few days before he would have been 91. Two great men have left us this year. Two men who changed the lives of hundreds of people. May God bless Ed's family as they grieve. Elaine
Posted by John Tomaselli on August 13, 2011
It's the rarest of men, that has left us. He was what all should be. His character was above anyone I've ever known. His humanity & service were a constant throughout his life. His humor, music, & fellowship made each day a joyous occasion. He was my friend, my family, my hero!

Leave a Tribute

 
Recent Tributes
Posted by Bradford Barnet on August 11, 2016
I think these yearly emails are a nice reminder to take a moment to appreciate those we have lost. For many on here Ed was a friend, a father, a husband, a role model. For me Ed is important because of the impact he made on those that I care about- Will, Gigi, Mimi.... And also because his sudden passing was a lesson for me that you don't always get to say goodbye or leave when you are expecting, so make sure you say the important things today rather than tomorrow. People make impacts on our lives everyday, that's Ed's for me. Getting that email is a way for me to be sure to remember an important piece of my friends, but also to remember that lesson.
Posted by John Tomaselli on May 8, 2015
A flyover across Washington, DC featuring 56 vintage planes in 15 formations honored the 70th anniversary of the victory in Europe today. It also happens to be Ed's birthday. Lisa and I visited Ed at Arlington today. We were fortunate to witness the flyover from Ed's grave site. It was a beautiful May day in DC. The planes flew in front of us before banking left across Memorial Bridge and down Independence Avenue. As some may recall, Ed was to have had a flyover during his service but the poor weather conditions of that day, kept the jets grounded in Norfolk. Although the event was to commemorate VE Day and those that sacrificed so much during WWII, we were certain there was a bit of tribute reserved for this special Marine Aviator who served our nation in Korea and Vietnam. Especially, when the Missing Man Formation flew by our vantage point.

A few years have passed since the day Ed left all of us, and the day of that driving rain during his burial. I'm certain, if like me, you all feel that he is never far, always in our thoughts, and continues to guide and lead us forward in our own personal journey through life.

Two nights ago, I was at a business dinner with four people that I'm just beginning to become acquainted. A good conversation was being had with our meal. Somehow, the banter got around to a sharing of stories, and then on to "unusual questions" we've all been asked at times across our careers --- you know, like during an interview you're asked, "if you were a tree, what kind would you be, etc". All of our heads were shaking as we grinned. One of the dinner guests then brought forward the one, "Dead or alive, if you could have dinner with one person, who would it be?". That same question was then put to each dinner guest.

"Jesus", followed by several other famous persons, was put forth.
As you have already anticipated, when it came my turn, I simply stated, "my father-in-law, Brigadier Edward A. Parnell".

Naturally, this answer created a pause, followed by curiosity, and then an inquiry as to "why". I conveyed to them the type, and the character of the man we all love. The gentlemen across the table assumed I must not have had the opportunity to spend much time with Ed. He asked me how many dinners I had with Ed. I told him, "Hundreds if not a thousand. Perhaps a slight exaggeration, but certainly many, many more than I could have ever had hoped. But for me, to have one more dinner with him, would be more than precious and beyond wonderful".

I then told them that my only fear about my answer, is that it is most likely the same answer of thousands of people who knew Ed. If that be the case, I can only pray I'm not at the end of the line, because I certainly will go hungry as I await my turn in that chow line behind all the many ahead.

I left the dinner that night knowing four people had just been introduced to the General. How fortunate they had just become. Almost... almost... as fortunate as we many, that shook his hand, had a chat, shared a smile, and broke bread with him. What a great gift his birth has been to all of us that were privileged to have crossed his path.

Happy Birthday, Ed! Thanks for the gift of your ever lasting friendship and presence! Though you are with us always, we miss you!
_____________________

"He has achieved success who has lived well, laughed often and loved much; who has gained the respect of intelligent men and the love of little children; who has filled his niche and accomplished his task; who has left the world better than he found it, whether by an improved poppy, a perfect poem, or a rescued soul; who has never lacked appreciation of earth’s beauty or failed to express it; who has always looked for the best in others and given them the best he had; whose life was an inspiration; whose memory a benediction." ~Bessie Stanley, 1905
Posted by Joe Kern on August 11, 2014
One evening this week we had the family for dinner. Hogfish was featured. It brought memories of Ed and Nancy's love of fishing and of the huge Hogfish they caught off Tilloo Cay in the Bahamas. Catching Hogfish with rod and reel is very unusual.  It was the largest one l know of caught that way. We all participated in a delicious dinner thanks ti Ed and Nancy.
Recent stories

A gentleman's gentleman

Shared by Steve Frei on August 26, 2011

I had the pleasure of knowing Ed for many years although regretably I had not seen him recently.  Ed (General) ooozed purity, honesty, genuiness, friendlyness and integrity from his soul.  I was fortunate to have been allowed to even share a sliver of his life.  I know he will be greatly missed by his entire family.  Our family's thoughts and prayers are with you all.

Steve, Susan, Spencer and Garret Frei  

A great night with great friends!

Shared by Curt Bartenbach on August 24, 2011

Oh how I wish there were some photos of my good friend TK and me the night we were seated in Nancy and Ed’s beautiful dinner table in their home in Summer Place in Vero Beach, FL. TK was visiting from Maryland and Gretchen Collins had asked TK and I to go with her to dinner at the Parnell’s. The day was beautiful and the house is nothing short of charming. We had crudités in the living area and Ed was showing off his new iPod and JBL iPod player neatly tucked behind the couch that he controlled with a wireless remote…it was very slick and sounded great. We all laughed at each other and enjoyed the comfort of just everything…I do remember that Ed delivered a very nice and warm ‘grace’ prior to all of us dining, and dinner was just great. As the meal was winding down, somehow Ed learned of TK’s service in the Marine Corp and I think that all of us that night got to see something that I’m convinced just did not happen very much. For at least the next hour or so I can surely tell you, that nobody said a word as we all listened to the General speak. I know my mouth was hanging open and I think TK (aka Tom Kershner) also felt the same, we heard stories of war, flying, and helicopters with bullet holes in them…Ed went in the back room and came out with a folder full of photos. I mentioned that I wished there were photos of TK and I…the look on our faces after that dinner must have just been something to see. You just could tell this man was a man’s man and true life hero. He never said anything to the effect of him being that…you just knew it from the stories. It truly was an evening to remember. I often thought of that dinner when I would see Ed from time to time both in Vero and in Ocean City…I don’t know, and I bet many of you do, I just think that I was lucky that he let us in to his job that night and shared it with us. I’m honored to have met him…he is the reason, like so many others - that I live a very comfortable and free life. Thank you for that General Parnell. You will be missed by all. I love you Nancy, be strong.

From Tom Collins

Shared by Will Collins on August 23, 2011

 OUR WONDERFUL GENERAL ED DOING WHAT HE LIKED BEST. OCEANS OF LOVE, TOM COLLINS