Joseph B. Ewing, an early pioneer of rental since the early 1950s, died last week in Springfield, Mo. After serving in the U.S. Army during World War 2, Ewing and his wife Peggy started a wood lot in the Los Angeles area. He soon added trailers and tillers and formed Joe’s Rentals. In 1962, the Ewings merged their company with Bud and Doris Turner’s rental centers to form PDQ Rentals. Still a major player in the southern California rental market, PDQ, based in Santa Fe Springs, Calif., is No. 89 on the RER 100.
Ewing was active in the Equipment Rental Association, the predecessor to the California Rental Association. Ewing was instrumental in the formation of CRA and helped organize its first rental shows in the late 1950s.
In 1964, Ewing was named CRA’s Rentalman of the Year, an award that was later re-named for the founder of RER Magazine, James Gartland. After years of volunteering for various posts in the CRA, Ewing was elected CRA president in 1968.
The Ewings retired from the rental industry in the late 1970s and moved back to Arkansas and later Missouri. Ewing was born in Kansas City, Mo.
Ewing is survived by his wife, sons Charles and James, and three grandchildren.