Ed Houghton Obituary
March 5, 1935 - January 6, 2017
Ed's life journey began March 5, 1935 as one of 13 children on the eastern plains of Willow Lake, South Dakota and concluded peacefully January 6, 2017 at his hillside home in Ashland, Oregon.
From his youthful days of hard work on the family farm to his retirement years, Ed approached life with a stubborn resolve to live with zest, determination, integrity, and a strong sense of pride in his accomplishments.
Upon graduating from high school, he joined the United States Marine Corps and served his country in Korea. He returned home following his honorable discharge and enrolled at Black Hills State Teachers College where he earned his bachelor degree and teaching credential. He later earned a master of arts degree at Southern Oregon College and a doctorate in education at Oregon State University. His 31-year career as an educator (high school teacher and higher-ed professor) included positions in Montana, Wyoming, Washington, California, Utah, and Oregon.
Ed married JoAnn Weller in 1980 and moved to Ashland where he taught as a full professor in the business department of Southern Oregon State College. In 1984 his son, Eric was born, followed by a second son, Joshua, born in 1989.
In addition to his teaching responsibilities, Ed was co-owner of an Italian restaurant in Grants Pass. Creating a delicious entree' of veal scaloppini for a customer gave him great pleasure. Not content with being a restaurateur, Ed launched into the world of real estate development. Two residential neighborhoods in Ashland exist because of Ed's ability to see possibilities, to bring together engineers and construction professionals, and to navigate the regulations of the planning process.
In 2001, Ed made another lasting impact on the Ashland community by spearheading the refurbishing of the Ashland Middle School track and infield. He saw the track as fit for only steeplechase races and set about ensuring that young athletes had an all-weather track - a safe and proper venue for competitions. Ed's dedication to youth sports prompted him to devote untold hours coaching YMCA basketball and flag football, Pop Warner football (as co-founder of Ashland's program), Little League baseball, and AAU basketball teams. Ed regularly attended SOU athletic events and served for several years on the Raider Club board of directors. Additionally, Ed's dedication to young people and their co-curricular interests led him to be an active patron of Ashland High School's drama program.
As a curious citizen of the world, Ed traveled often with family and friends to Mexico, Canada, Europe, Asia, Australia, and most of the 50 states. These trips often included time on golf courses, ski slopes, or attending college and major-league athletic events. When he found time to relax, Ed relished a competitive cribbage game as well as delighted in fine-tuning a well-planned practical joke.
Ed is survived by his wife, JoAnn; his sons, Eric (Alena) and Joshua. Also surviving him is his brother, Robert (Lola) Houghton; sisters, Donna (Bernie) Hamilton, Janice Killingsworth, Karen Emel, Linda (Don) Fleeger, and Carole (Doug) Kettwig; sisters-in-law, Elsie Houghton, Karen Houghton, and Teri Houghton; brother-in-law Gordon Reed; and many nieces and nephews. Preceding Ed in death were his parents, Charles and Mata Houghton; brothers, Albert, William, and Ronald Houghton; sisters, Doris Larson, Virene Stromsness, and Adele Reed; brothers-in-law, Ivan Larson, John Stromsness, Charles Killingsworth, and Phil Emel; and two nephews.
Plans for a memorial service are pending. Arrangements are in care of Litwiller-Simonsen Funeral Home, Ashland, Ore.
For more information, contact: Jeanne Stallman, Executive Director, Outreach and Engagement, firstname.lastname@example.org.