Ed Boden's love of family extended beyond his own. As a coach of youth sports, he impacted the lives of many youngsters in the Seaford community.
Boden coached youth baseball, softball, boys and girls basketball, and football in Seaford for more than 20 years. Sports even influenced his selection of family cars. Boden bought larger vehicles, including a 15-passenger van, to cart around his family, sports equipment and the players on his numerous teams.
“He had a saying to his players,” said his son, Andrew, of Wantagh. " 'If you can get to my house, I’ll take you to the games.’ ”
Edwin John Boden Sr., died of congestive heart failure in his Seaford home on April 11, surrounded by his family. He was a custodial engineer for 37 years for the NYC Board of Education, his family said. He was 81.
Boden coached CYO intramural sports and basketball at St. William the Abbot in Seaford from 1965-1987. Boden, called “Mr. B” by many of his players, coached in the Seaford Little League from 1970-1987, and St. William the Abbot CYO softball from 1983-1987.
“As great as it was to be coached by him, it was those car rides that were so special,” said Jenn Flower, a friend of Boden’s daughter, Kathleen. “When other adults would talk, you might roll your eyes, but not with him. You would listen. He was so spot-on with everything he said.”
Boden, born on March 27, 1939, in Brooklyn, was the youngest of nine children. He affectionately was known as “Uncle Eddie” to his nieces and nephews. St. William the Abbot Pastor Joe Fitzgerald, who also knew Boden as “Uncle Eddie” his entire life, gave him his final Communion and last rites.
Boden met his future wife, Susanne, in 1955 at a dinner-dance in Manhattan. He graduated from Fort Hamilton High School in 1957 and was married in 1961. The Bodens moved to Massapequa in 1964 and settled in Seaford in 1969.
Boden had eight grandchildren and often was seen driving to their various sporting events and dance recitals in his red 1999 Mustang GT convertible — the same vehicle he used to transport the homecoming queens in the Seaford Homecoming parades, the family said.
“Whenever you say the name Ed Boden you think of his red convertible,” said Emily, one of his granddaughters. “It was his pride and joy, his fifth child.”
Boden was a Mets fan and a member of Local 891, the International Union of Operating Engineers. Boden was an avid golfer and also played in the Seaford Men's Softball League for more than 30 years.
In addition to his wife and son, Boden is survived by son Edwin John Boden Jr. and daughter-in-law, Darlene, of Seaford, daughter Denise Boden of Seaford, daughter-in-law Stephanie Boden of Wantagh, daughter Kathleen Haug and son-in-law Kevin Haug of Seaford, and sister Anne Riggs of Brooklyn.
The family said they will have a private graveside service on April 28 and a memorial Mass will be held at a later time. In lieu of flowers, the family asked that donations be made to one of Boden’s favorite organizations, including: St. William the Abbot Church, the Seaford 9/11 Memorial Committee, Camp Anchor, the Seaford Lions Club, and Karen’s Hope.