Ted LeRoy Edwards Sr., 90, retired executive

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Ted LeRoy Edwards Sr.

Ted LeRoy Edwards Sr., 90, formerly of Wayne, a retired executive for Alco Standard Corp., died of heart failure Monday, March 26, at Dunwoody Village, a retirement community in Newtown Square.

After several years in sales and management for paper companies, Mr. Edwards became president of Philadelphia Paper Corp. in 1958. Seven years later, he became president and co-owner of Garrett-Buchanan Co., then one of the oldest and largest paper merchants in the Mid-Atlantic region.

The firm was later acquired by Unisource Corp., a division of Alco Standard.

In 1970, Mr. Edwards became chairman of Unisource, a major distributor of fine printing papers.

After serving as chairman for about a decade, he headed acquisitions and mergers for Alco Standard until retiring in the early 1990s.

He loved his work and enjoyed counseling young entrepreneurs, a daughter, Gwynne Tracy, said.

A native of Wichita, Kan., Mr. Edwards attended Wichita State University.

During World War II, he served in the Army as a lieutenant in the Philippines.

Mr. Edwards was a member of St. Davids Gold Club and the Tupper Lake Country Club in the Adirondacks, where he had a vacation home.

He earned a pilot's license and for several years enjoyed "soar planing" in gliders, his daughter said. He skied until he was 85, she said, and loved singing in barbershop quartets.

In addition to his daughter, Mr. Edwards is survived by his wife of 22 years, Joan Markus Edwards; sons Ted Jr. and Neill; daughters Joan Cloetingh and Barbara Cloetingh; stepchildren David, Steven, and Susan Markus; two sisters; 23 grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren. He was predeceased by his former wife, Shirley Gaskill, who died in 2009.

A memorial service will be at 1 p.m., Saturday, March 31, at Wayne Presbyterian Church, 125 E. Lancaster Ave., Wayne.

Donations may be made to Foundation Fighting Blindness, Executive Plaza 1, 11350 McCormick Rd., Hunt Valley, Md., 21031.

 


Contact Sally A. Downey at 215-854-2913 or sdowney@phillynews.com.