Edward Carr | Passages

Edward Carr, loving husband, father, grandfather, brother, and an architect with an unparalleled vision died on January 8, 2021.

Ed was born in Wenatchee on April 4, 1946 to Mildred (Millie) Ellen Anderson and Edward Lewis Carr. His father was an architect, and Ed remembers drawing next to him on the floor. His father died when he was six. The family moved to the WSU Tree Fruit Research Center with his stepfather, Robert Lindner. Ed joined the Wenatchee Youth Circus, which traveled around the PNW and lower BC. His job was setting up the high wire and testing the net with a swan dive.

Ed graduated from Whitman College with a degree in Philosophy. In his junior year he was an exchange student at Howard University and joined their debate team. He met his wife Elizabeth Hartley at Whitman. They were inseparable from their first date and married in 1969. Ed earned his Doctorate in Philosophy (Aesthetics) from the University of Chicago in 1975. They moved to Orcas Island, where he trained as a carpenter with Harbor Lights Construction Company (George Larson) and built his family’s first home. In 1985, Ed earned a MA in Architecture from the UW and started his own architecture firm in Seattle, focusing on waterfront homes.

Ed’s unique background as a philosopher, carpenter, and native Northwesterner informed all his work. His houses, found throughout the San Juans and Puget Sound, harmonize with the natural beauty of the landscape and are designed to be filled with light. In a Seattle Times article on his work, Ed said, “I spent a lot of time outdoors in the islands, so I know how the weather works, the microclimates that change the ecology, where the sun hits at different times of the year.” He designed with classical principles of ratios and balance, saying, “For me, beauty, almost by definition, is a matter of proportion.”

He was a passionate soccer player and sailor. He taught his sons to ski and hike. He loved the North Cascades, Gary Snyder’s Riprap and Cold Mountain Poems, and a well-made espresso; taking long walks with Elizabeth; painting the landscapes of Walla Walla (where they retired in 2012); gardening with native plants; and joking and drawing with his grandchildren. The Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival reignited his love of classical music.

Ed was a philosopher and an artist. He was kind, thoughtful, and fiercely intelligent. He had a strong internal compass and never wavered in his principles. He was self-contained, and with his wife, complete. To friends missing him, he would say – listen to Bach, take a walk, and look for beauty.

He was preceded in death by his mother Millie, father Edward, stepfather Robert, and brothers Larry and Gordon. He is survived by his wife Elizabeth, sons Aengus (Tracy) and Rogan (Christy), grandchildren Freya, Colette, and Adrienne, and Lindner siblings Karen, Doug, Robert, Jean, and April.

A celebration of life will be held this summer. Remembrances may be sent to the University of Chicago, Whitman College, or the Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival.