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William Edward Anderson / November 11, 2019

William Edward Anderson, 79, of Asheville, N.C. died Wednesday, Nov. 6, 2019. A native of South Boston, he was born on Dec. 1, 1939 to the late Edward Kerns Anderson and Selma Mae Anderson.

Following his high school graduation, he became an apprenticeship graduate of the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co. where he proudly worked to build the USS Enterprise. Ed graduated from Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, with a degree in Industrial Engineering. In 1987, he relocated to Asheville as plant manager of ITT Automotive. He established three automotive brake-manufacturing facilities in Asheville, Morganton and Henderson County employing approximately 2,000 people. In 1995, he was awarded the ITT Harold S. Geneen Award for Unique Team Achievement for building support and cooperation between the German and North American brake manufacturing teams. Following his retirement from ITT Automotive, he helped establish Hasco, Inc., an automotive injection molding company located in Buncombe County and Eco-Panels, LLC a green energy construction firm located in Mocksville, N.C.

In Asheville, Ed was known for his community service of 10 years on the board of Mission Hospital, Mountain Workforce Development board and Mountain Bizworks. Ed’s passion for automobiles enabled him to drive his 1939 Pontiac in several Great Races Across America with his friend and navigator, John Davies. Following retirement, he focused his skills on woodturning and spending time at John C. Campbell Folk School and Arrowmont in woodturning classes. Among his pleasures were family reunions with his cousins especially at the “home place” in South Boston. His greatest delight was visiting his children and granddaughters and traveling with his wife, Becky across the United States and Europe.

He is survived by his wife, Becky Anderson of Asheville; his daughter, Cheryl Anderson of Christiansburg, and fiancée Dennis Smith; his son, Mark and daughter in-law, Rosette Anderson of Novi, Mich.; his stepdaughter, Lynn Williams and partner, Billy Luther of Cape Carteret, N.C., and his stepson, Alan Williams and wife, Darleen Wilson of Lowell, Mass. He has three granddaughters, Alex Wiltsee of Knoxville, Tenn.; Kirsten and Sydney Anderson of Novi, Mich.

A memorial service will be held Saturday, Nov. 16 at 11 a.m. in the Norma F. Pulliam Chapel at Givens Estates, 2360 Sweeten Creek Road, Asheville, NC, with Rev. Ed Hillman officiating.

His family will receive friends Friday, Nov. 15, from 6-8 p.m. on at Groce Funeral Home at Lake Julian, 72 Long Shoals Road, Arden, NC.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to: Memory Care, 100 Far Horizons Lane, Asheville, NC,28803; Givens Staff Appreciation Fund, 2360 Sweeten Creek Road, Asheville, NC 28803 or Four Seasons Hospice, 571 South Allen Road, Flat Rock, NC 28731.

The family extends gratitude to the staff of Memory Care, Givens Health Center and Four Seasons Hospice for their support, service and compassionate caregiving.

To send a message of condolence or to share a memory with the family, please visit Ed’s obituary page at

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