Ed describes himself as a “farm boy” from Ingersoll, Ontario. If you dig more, you’ll find that he is legendary in the world of “innovative travel.”
When I first visited Canada with Ed in 1995, he took me to his old elementary school and we’ve visited it each subsequent trip as well. This trip to Canada in November 2007 was no different; we visited SS #1 Dereham Township Public School built in 1872. It’s now converted to a house, but Ed still remembers running through the iron gate to the one-room school house where each year students advanced a grade by changing to a different row of seats. He walked to school from the farm some four miles every day. Three generations of Ed’s family attended school there including all five Lonsbary kids, Ed’s mom Jean, and his Grandpa Wray Wilford.
Ed learned how to farm and feel comfortable around heavy equipment from his Grandpa. That’s why he can work on our coach - just another piece of big equipment - and why he can skillfully drive it. He says he one time raced a tractor backwards. How’s that for driving talent?
As the oldest boy in the family, Ed helped on the family farm. He worked hard and even picked tobacco at other farms for six summers to earn a wage. Throughout his college years, Ed bartended at the Ingersoll Inn. He earned a decree from Fanshaw College in 1972.
Over the years, Ed’s career took him from Timberjack in Canada to 25 years in corporate America. A job with Jacuzzi landed him a job in Arkansas with a permanent green card to live in the United States. He worked for DuPont, Dow, and Bayer in engineering, sales and marketing. His extensive travel made him a “road warrior” and feed his love of being on the road.
Wanderlust and his love for big equipment led Ed to create Private Motor Coach, Inc. (PMC) in January 1999. He bought a MCI-9 bus conversion/motor home that he used to take people “Anywhere-Anytime”. Families, businessmen, people with special needs, and entertainers have all been welcomed aboard the coach he named “Patty’s Charm”. The United Motor Coach Association honored Ed’s innovative business with the 2001 Vision Award. Ed opened up a whole new world to travelers, especially those who might not have any other options, or those who might not want to travel the routine way. His next move is to grow the Central and South American markets through PMC (www.privatemotorcoach.com) and build a new venture Global Tourism Solutions, Inc.
Ed’s come a long way from a farm boy at a one-room school to an entrepreneur who is a legendary innovator in private travel.