Edward Anthony Milazzo The Man. The Myth. The Legend. Men wanted to be him, and women wanted to be with him.
Edward Anthony Milazzo passed away January 24, 2018, at age 82.
Ed loved adobe mud, toads singing in the rain, growing veggies, coffee with donuts, eating garlic, and beautiful women. He was a jack of all trades, a visionary, and a hard worker. His signature look was long braided hair, a wild beard, an off-colored beanie, and stained work clothes. He died as a result of being stubborn, refusing to follow doctor’s orders and for raising all kinds of hell for eight decades. He liked to read about many subjects and expounded passionately on such subjects as: physics, science, Buddhism, religion, spirituality, environmentalism and politics. He loved his 13 children and wife, Kathleen Milazzo, unconditionally. He had a rich life full of adventure.
Ed was born on October 20, 1935, in Wayne, MI. He grew up in nearby Dearborn, and then travelled across Europe in the US Army as a Morse Code operator, and photographer. He was very proud of his apprenticeship and journeymanship as a wood model sculptor at Fischer Body after leaving the Army. He met his first wife, Margrete Dummert, in Germany, married her in France, and brought her and their sons Billy and Eddie back to the US. Together they had four children, moving to the Virgin Islands, Hawaii, and back to Michigan.
While attending Michigan State University, he met several artists and musicians, and soon moved with them to San Francisco to help start the Hippie movement. He ran the Firehouse and the Pacific Ocean Trading Company in the Haight/Ashbury district, a head shop owned by the famous artist Mouse.
When the 1970s came along, the SF scene became too drug-fueled (and too popular, he would later quip), so he moved to Jerome, Arizona via Hawaii, refurbishing many abandoned buildings and kicking off the art scene there while helping launch a health food store that would become the focal point of the local hippie community. While in the area, he met his second wife, Dianne Poltis, with whom he launched his dream to create an oasis in the desert, as far off the grid and away from civilization as possible. They purchased 80 acres of rugged land in northwest of Winslow, Arizona, designated on the Arizona State Map as Desolation Flats, but eventually settling on just calling it “The Land.” Ed picked this location in part because it was “as close as he could get to the nearby Hopi Indian people.”
Ed welcomed strangers to The Land, providing a space for many on their journeys through the area. He also met the love of his life and third wife, Kathleen Hendricks while building the home of their dreams at The Land, a half underground home built with adobe, rocks, and anything else the family could find. Cool in the summer, and warm in the winter, the naturally insulated home affectionately called “The Hogan” is where his heart lived. He was famous for lying down next to the woodstove in the center of the eight-sided main room to warm his back and take a snooze.
He is survived by his wife Kathleen and 11 of his 13 children, 12 grandchildren, and one great-grandchild. His living children are Edward Jr., Valerie, Pinuu, Dawn, Lukas, Cedar, Moses, Spring, Maureen, Eli, and Clayborn. He was preceded in death by his sons Billy and Johnny. A memorial service will be held at Desolation Flats ("The Land") on Sunday, May 27th. Call Kathy at 928-607-2999 for details regarding the service
Walk in peace, Edward Anthony Milazzo.