Edward McEachern Foster, 88, of Middlebury
MIDDLEBURY — Edward McEachern Foster, a longtime resident of Middlebury, Vt., and Cape Coral, Fla., passed away peacefully at The Arbors at Shelburne on Sept. 9, 2021. He was 88 years old.
The son of Dana Eddy and Ellis Foster, Ed spent his teenage years working at Persons and Foster Garage, a Chrysler-Plymouth franchise that became a central part of his life and formed his love of cars.
Ed graduated from Middlebury High School in 1951. He attended the University of Vermont, where he was a member of the Theta Chi Fraternity and met his wife of 61 years, Carolyn Knapp. He graduated from UVM’s School of Technology in 1957 after serving in the United States Army. Ed’s experience in the Army defined him for life, both as a keen businessman and a deeply patriotic American.
In 1963, Ed became an owner in Foster Motors and over the next five decades, oversaw the growth of the franchise from a small brick structure with 12 employees into one of the largest and most successful family-owned Chrysler franchises in America. He served as a stalwart member and president of the Vermont Automobile Dealers of America (VADA) for many years, and in 1985 he was named one of the country’s top 50 Quality Dealers by Time Magazine.
Ed will be remembered as a businessman and a friend to the town of Middlebury. He served on the Middlebury School Board, regularly provided automobiles and other support to Middlebury Union High School, served on the Board of Directors of the National Bank of Middlebury, and was a longtime member of the Middlebury Rotary Club.
Ed and Carolyn shared a lifelong passion for the water and learned how to sail on Lake Champlain. Ed enjoyed skiing at the Middlebury Snow Bowl, played golf, and was an avid fan of the Boston Red Sox. And although he was a life-long fan of Don Shula and the Miami Dolphins, he relished watching the New England Patriots with his family. Ed loved watching NASCAR, never lost his love for the automobile, and loved nothing more than the sweet sound of a Hemi V-8.
Ed is survived by his sister Marion Foster of New York; his four children, Scott Foster and his wife Alyce of Vermont; David Foster and his wife Lisa of Vermont; Michael Foster and his wife Sarah of Massachusetts; Susan Drown and her husband Chuck of New Hampshire; and six grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
Ed will be laid to rest next to his wife of 61 years in a private family ceremony. In lieu of flowers, donations in his honor may be made to the American Brain Foundation, which promotes and invests in research across the spectrum of brain diseases and disorders.◊