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Forrest Manufacturing head dies at 80

Forrest Manufacturing Co., a saw blade manufacturer, announced the Nov. 5 passing of James E. Forrest Sr., who ran the company for more than 40 years and designed many of its most successful and popular blades. He was 80 years old. 

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Forrest, whose father Albert Walter Forrest founded the company in 1946, initially supervised the sharpening operation before assuming management of the entire company.

In the mid 1970s, Forrest introduced standardized large-run saw blade manufacturing and innovative blades, including the all-purpose Woodworker II; the Dado King, a dado set to crosscut veneer plywood; the Miter Master for cutting difficult materials such as aluminum extrusion; and the No-Melt blade for cutting plastic sheets and extrusions.

In 1957, Forrest married his wife, Lois, who predeceased him in 1997. They had four children. Two of them, James Forrest Jr. and Jay Forrest, currently run the company.

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