It is with profound sadness that the family of Ernest Reed announce his peaceful passing on October 27 at the age of 71 years. He was buried with full military honors on Saturday, October 30, in the Page City Cemetery, where his wife Lena Reed is also buried. His honorary funeral procession was led by the Navajo Hopi Honor Riders from Tuba City to Page, Arizona, for his final rest. His nephew Pastor LeRoy Thinn led the gravesite service, and his granddaughter Durann Begay delivered a heartfelt eulogy.
He will be dearly missed by his daughters Laverda Reed, Veronica Klain and Althea Gattis; sisters Betty Crank and Rosalie Moore; grandchildren Tarah Weeks, Kendrick Begay, Stephen Klain, Kyron Klain, Warren Klain, Landon Reed and Loren Reed; and 16 great-grandchildren, plus one great-great-grandchild.
He is preceded by his loving wife Lena and daughter Florene Reed; brothers Robert Reed, Richard Reed Sr., Raymond Reed Sr. and George Reed Jr.; sisters Mary Lou Thinn and Garnett Yazzie; and his parents Florence Edwards Reed and George Reed Sr.
He will be remembered for his honorable service during the Vietnam Era from 1971-1977 and his great respect for veterans. He achieved the rank of U.S. Army Corporal Specialist 4 and was assigned to 180th Aviation Company as an aviation repairman, specifically repairing and maintaining Army helicopters. He was an especially big fan of the Chinooks and took great pride in having worked on and flown them.
Upon his return to civilian life, he was a wildlife resource officer for the Navajo Nation Game and Fish Department before starting his 38-year career at Navajo Generating Station and Salt River Project Corporation as a railroad specialist, track equipment operator and mechanic. Upon his retirement, he was recognized most for his safety consciousness and skillful operation of heavy equipment, cranes and the famous NGS coal train.
In his leisure and after retirement, he will always be remembered most for having been an avid outdoorsman and family man. He loved hunting, scouting for hunts, camping, fishing and being in the elements. He enjoyed spending time with family and helping whenever he was needed. He will be deeply missed by his friends, family and all who knew him.