Henry Edwin McGrew was born at LeGrand, Iowa, on 3rd Month 4, 1868, and passed away 4th Month 27, 1955, at his home in Altadena, California. His parents, David Davis and Alpha Pearson McGrew, were sincere, devout members of the Society of Friends, and their home provided a wholesome atmosphere for their children. Edwin's higher education was obtained in LeGrand Friends Academy, in a business college in Des Moines, Iowa, in Penn College, Oskaloosa, Iowa, and much later a year in Haverford College Graduate School in Pennsylvania.

Before and during his college days, he taught school at intervals, beginning a long and successful career as educator. He taught in two Friends Academies, was head of the preparatory department of his Alma Mater for three years, was President of Pacific College, Newberg, Oregon for eight years, and was President of Penn College for a term of ten years, and a later term of five years.

Just before his graduation from college in 1895, he was recorded as a minister of the Gospel, and, as Pastor of Friends Meetings, served in Earlham, Iowa, in Los Angeles, in Whittier for eight years - during which time the present church building was erected - and in Pasadena, ten years. Both as educator and as pastor, his contributions have been of inestimable value to the church.

[Two periods of pioneer life, and two of serving as Y.M.C.A. secretary in his earlier years gave him a breadth of experience and outlook that helped him much in his greater life work.]

He was twice married, first to Edith Ware who died in 1919, leaving a daughter, Marian [sic]. Later he married Frances Mitchell, who, with his daughter Marian Woodard, two grandchildren, and six great-grandchildren, survives him.

Edwin McGrew possessed an attractive personality, was gentle, kindly, a good story-teller, and gifted in friendliness. He was no crusader, but a unifier, beloved by those who knew him, devoted to his Lord, and during these last years waiting patiently until he should meet Him face to face.

The world [deeply] needs more kind and gentle people.

Biography from "California Yearly Meeting Minutes 1950-1959" page 69 [original handwritten copy in possession, Jamie Niekamp, includes passages bracketed].