Santa Clara Magazine is published in print for alumni and friends of the University. It is updated weekly on the web.
Edward Remi Middendorf ’62 was born May 7, 1939, in Salt Lake City, the son of Roger and Marie Middendorf. A stellar student, Ed graduated from Judge Memorial High School in 1958 with a diploma, a strong work ethic, and a much-loved ’55 Chevy coupe he bought with proceeds from the many jobs he held from the age of 12. A visit to his sister in San Francisco eventually led Ed to the campus of SCU, where he chose the only major that didn’t come with a foreign language requirement: a B.S. in commerce. It was a fortuitous selection. Ed proved a natural in business and accounting, graduating cum laude in three-and-a-half years as the top-ranked student in his major. After college Ed moved from Santa Clara to Pacific, a co-d residence hall in San Francisco’s Pacific Heights. There he met the great love of his life, Marguerite Readhimer, a recent graduate of Louisiana State University, and pursued her with the same focused determination that he brought to his studies and fledgling career. Ed’s efforts paid off. He and Marguerite were married on Dec. 28, 1963, in Campti, Louisiana, and established their new life together in San Francisco’s Marina District. By the time they had settled in their forever home in Tiburon in 1971, they were the proud parents of three children and one toy poodle. With New York Life, Ed found a calling that suited his skills and fierce independence. Never one to rest on his laurels, he continued his education, becoming a chartered life underwriter, adding more financial services, and establishing the Middendorf Planning and Service Company. Ed spent 36 years growing and servicing an impressive and diverse list of clients, each of whom considered him a gentleman, friend, and trusted advisor. His career brought him much personal fulfillment, the opportunity to travel, lifelong friendships, and many accolades, including membership in the New York Life Chairman’s Council and lifetime membership in the Million Dollar Round Table. Ed was always fond of zigging when other people zagged, a trait best exemplified by his decision to briefly step away from his highly successful career in 1977 to take his entire family on a sabbatical. Even their new temporary home had an Ed Middendorf flair: a 17th-ntury castle in Ringmore, South Devon, England, a tiny village of 100 people. In the year they spent abroad, the Middendorfs created a lifetime of memories as they traveled, the children attended local schools, and Marguerite and Ed (in matching track suits) introduced the locals to the relatively new sport of jogging. The year abroad reenergized Ed, and when he and his family returned to Tiburon in 1978, his business continued to flourish until his retirement in 1997. Health issues restricted his mobility in his later years, but Ed’s retirement was a busy one. In addition to traveling the world with his soul mate, Marguerite, and enthusiastically following his grandchildren’s athletic, academic, and artistic pursuits, Ed donated his time and expertise to a number of organizations, including the Marin YMCA, the Tiburon Design Review Board, Marin Country Club, Ritter Center, St. Vincent School for Boys, and Global Strategies for HIV Prevention. Ed’s pride in his many accomplishments paled in comparison to the pride he felt for his family. He treasured his time with his wife and children above all else, and the memories of many vacations, including road trips in the “Green Machine” station wagon (and in one case, a ridiculously large Winnebago), are as precious to his loved ones as they are abundant. Surrounded by the people he most cherished, Edward Middendorf passed away peacefully at his Tiburon home on March 10, 2018. He will be remembered by all who knew him as a loving husband, a devoted father and grandfather, and a loyal friend. He is preceded in death by his parents, Roger and Marie Middendorf, and brothers Jim and Don Middendorf. He is survived by his wife, Marguerite; sister, Mary Beth Clifton of Lafayette, daughters Lisa Baldwin of Mill Valley and Shauna (Peter) Rudy of San Rafael; son Zack (Alexandra) Middendorf of Natchitoches, Louisiana; seven adoring grandchildren, Anna, Luke, Reed, Jordan, Griffin, Sarah, and Trent; and many beloved nieces and nephews, all of whom will miss his gentle, fun-loving nature, huge heart, and enthusiastic yet truly horrible singing voice.