Ed Lafferty of Lake Balboa in the San Fernando Valley died at his home of 54 years of congenital heart failure on Saturday, Feb. 7, 2015, with his children at his side. He had just turned 81.
On Saturday, March 7, at noon, a memorial service will be held at Shepherd of the Hills Church, 19700 Rinaldi Street, Porter Ranch, Calif. A local celebration of life will be held in Three Rivers at a later date.
Ed was born January 29, 1934, in Pontiac, Mich., to Grady and Margaret Lafferty. He was one of five children.
He graduated from Hamilton High School in Los Angeles where he excelled in track and football. He set numerous records while there in pole vaulting and won the Helms Sportsman of the Year award in 1952.
He attended the University of Arizona for two years before returning to California and marrying his high school sweetheart, Dawn Diane, in 1954. During their early years together, Diane’s mom, Carol, passed away from cancer, so Ed left college and went to work for Diane’s father, Harry Rutherford, in his machine shop until Harry retired.
During this time, it was discovered that Ed was a natural salesman. He stayed in the machine shop business, which eventually led him to Southern California’s burgeoning aerospace industry. Ed worked in Lockheed Martin’s Skunk Works division for 11 years as a parts liaison representative.
Ed’s favorite getaway was Three Rivers, where he first visited in 1954. He owned a house on Kaweah River Drive and, in recent times, visited his sons and daughter here frequently.
Ed spent his leisure time golfing and fishing. He belonged to many golf organizations and teams and had a membership at El Cariso Golf Course in Sylmar.
Ed was preceded in death by his wife of 56 years, Dawn Diane (1935-2010), grandson Michael Edward Dopko, and brothers Grady Lafferty and Chuck Lafferty.
He is survived by his daughter, Carol Lynne Dopko of Three Rivers; sons Edward Hansford Lafferty II and wife Sharleen of Three Rivers and Richard Wayne Lafferty and wife Michelle of Three Rivers; and seven grandchildren, Robert Edward Lafferty, Shondra Lynn Nelson, Ashlee Marie Nelson, Alexis Simon Lafferty, Heather Nicole Pallotto, Gerritt James Kirby, and Marc Raymon Kirby.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project (www.woundedwarrior.org).