March 11, 1945 — May 31, 2022
Gary Anderson of Ashland passed away suddenly on May 31 from a heart attack. Gary and his wife of 43 years, Eugenia (Genie) Kraus Anderson, relocated to Ashland in 2019 after 40 years in Palo Alto and Los Altos, California.
Gary graduated with honors from Edison High School in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Portending things to come, Gary was editor of his high school newspaper as well as his senior class yearbook. He graduated from Princeton University with a degree in History, and after two years with the Army at Ft. Sill and Fort Bragg with the 18th Airborne Corps Artillery, Gary attended Carnegie-Mellon University where he earned an M.S. in Industrial Administration.
Gary had a rich and varied corporate career, beginning with Merrill Lynch Economics in New York and San Francisco. He moved to GE Information Services in Rockville, Maryland, in 1977, where he met Genie. In 1978 he joined Stanford Research Institute (SRI International) in Washington, D.C., then moved to their Menlo Park, California, office to become Manager of SRI’s Business Intelligence Program, a 1980s-decade think tank. While at SRI, Gary’s economic development consulting projects took him to Japan, China, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Germany, Slovenia, France, England, and many USA cities.
In California, Gary purchased his first Austin-Healey British car and became involved for his entire life with various Austin-Healey activities — club politics, drives, outings, car shows and meets.
After years of consulting jobs and travel, Gary and Genie purchased British Car Magazine and turned to automotive journalism, joined the Western Automotive Journalist organization, and sold the magazine eight years later to expand their journalistic opportunities. Gary became editor for various classic car magazines, eventually becoming Editor-In-Chief for The Star, the official magazine of the Mercedes-Benz Club of America. As active car enthusiasts for many years, Gary and Genie also penned the “On The Road” column of new car reviews for the Los Altos Town Crier until their move to Ashland. Gary was also an avid classic car race driver, campaigning his 1960 Red MGA at various California racetracks.
Following the move to Ashland, Gary quickly became fascinated with the history of Ashland and Rogue Valley, learned all he could about the subject, and decided to teach as an instructor and member of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at Southern Oregon University (OLLI at SOU). Passionate about sharing his knowledge and experience to help others, he became an Aspire Program mentor for Ashland High School juniors and seniors.
As an experienced journalist, writer, editor and publisher, Gary also joined ranks with the founders of the new Ashland.news, dispensing advice and expertise whenever he could. Gary was serving as the board’s treasurer when he died.
Gary’s wish was to be remembered as “an editor.” He was the best editor and worked hard to be better. In Gary’s words, “An editor is someone who clears away the smoke so that the flame within can clearly be seen. In that sense, I’ve edited numerous pieces or writing by other people since I was the copy editor on my high school yearbook and through my career in consulting and then magazine publishing. Helping places and people to realize more of their potential is a pretty good way to have spent a share of the short time I had to contribute to the continuum of history.”
A memorial service will be held later this summer. Memorial gifts may be made to OLLI at SOU in Ashland (inside.sou.edu/olli/giving); Ashland Emergency Food Bank (ashlandefb.org); or AHS Aspire Fast Forward Fund, Ashland High School, attn. Jen Marsden, 201 S. Mountain Ave., Ashland OR 97520.
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