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M-A-L Hobby Shop closing

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Those of you familiar with the Dallas-Fort Worth area will know of M-A-L Hobby shop in Irving, which has been at the same location since 1948 and which has also been a vendor at many past IPMS national conventions. I just learned this past Saturday that owner Ed Seay Jr, was diagnosed with dementia a little over a month ago and is now in a long-term care facility. The business had apparently been affected by his condition for some time.

Another local modeler reports that the building has been sold and will be transferred in phases. The N-track railroad club which is in one of the 4 or 5 store fronts will have 18 months to make other arrangements.

Local modelers and friends of Ed have been working there for the last four Saturdays cleaning out the back warehouse and have found lots of old new stock items which either Ed Sr or Ed Jr put away and forgot. A hundred or so Squadron In Action and Detail & Scale books will be going to Half Price Books, with the proceeds to go to support Ed’s care.

A lot of original material has been donated to the Frontiers of Flight museum in Dallas.

I had not seen Ed in about 6 weeks, and he seemed to be his usual self then, so I was stunned and truly saddened at the news when I visited the shop last Saturday. Back in the '70s, I and other modelers in Wichita Falls made regular monthly visits to M-A-L. Its closing marks — for all of us who knew Ed and his father and mother — the end of an era.

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Sad to hear.

As far as dementia goes, my father-in-law was fine, his normal self at our annual Thanksgiving dinner (held the Saturday after T-day at our home).

At Christmastime he was a little off. At their house, he commented about wanting to go home. He was home, but I guess all the family around was confusing him. That was strange since there was a family dinner at his home virtually every Sunday.

The next big gathering was Easter Sunday. He was definitely "not home" upstairs. Thought I was the man who sold him his house, but he's lived in that home for ages before I ever married into the family. Kept asking about where his deceased ex-wife was. She had died about ten years earlier.

It was sad to see him go from normal to needing help just to bathe in less than 5 months. It wasn't long before he was bedridden and died shortly afterwards.

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Michael,  you are correct.  It is the end of an era and sad on multiple levels.  I knew Ed jr and his father and met his mother a couple of times, though I never frequented the shop that often.  There were plenty of other shops back then that were closer to me.  Tolson's in particular.  It's sad about the way Ed jr is ending, sad for the closing of yet another brick-and-mortar hobby shop and sad for the gradual shutdown of an era that many or most of us belong to.

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