Don’t call his number again. Eddie Lane is “out of the office” for good. Charles Edward “Eddie” Lane, of Lexington, North Carolina, passed away on Monday, November 7, 2022, at the age of 75 after a prolonged battle with cancer. Born on February 16, 1947, in Albemarle, North Carolina, he graduated from Albemarle High School and later from NC State University. Early in his career Lane worked in textiles at PPG in Shelby and Lexington and later in marine composites at Owens Corning, where he retired as sales manager.
He will be missed dearly in the composites industry. For 40-plus years he was the go-to person for any and all questions and issues with fiberglass fabrics. “He was a servant at heart,” one of his friends stated, always there to help. In his understated and humble way, he made connections, brought people together, and whenever there was a project that needed technical and hands-on assistance, he was the first to be there and the last to leave. He was just as comfortable speaking with CEOs as with workers on the shop floor, always treating everyone with respect. During the early days of the transition from open- to closed-molding he was instrumental in setting up large-format live demos, such as the one at IBEX 2006 in Miami, where the Guru team infused skiffs and boat hulls.
His intricate knowledge of weave styles, sizing, and application techniques, plus his ability to troubleshoot intractable problems in the field made him a well-respected tech guy, but it was his friendly demeanor and outreach that stood out. Even during the most challenging projects he never lost his cool and kept his positive attitude. And so he was till the end, always in an upbeat spirit and caring about his family and friends. Our friend Bill Meyers from Pursuit Boats summed it up for all of us: “My heart is broken. Never a better man walked this planet.” And Meyers added this note: “I used to call him regularly when I had questions. Eddie helped me switch from 24/25 to 36/10 [the weights of noncrimp stitch-bonded (NCS) fabrics, indicating straight tows (first two numerals) and the chopped strand mat weight—ed.] for hand-laid hull bottoms. Sounds boring but improved not only strength but also stiffness.”
People wishing to honor Eddie can make memorials to Tyro United Methodist Church, 4484 S. NC Hwy 150, Lexington, NC 27295 USA. Condolences at www.davidsonfuneralhome.net.