KINGMAN – June 16 is rapidly approaching and it will be the second anniversary of the disappearance of the beloved family member, friend and Realtor, Sidney “Sid” Cranston Jr.
After a year and a half of exhausting investigations conducted by federal and local law enforcement agencies and searches by various people and groups, the body of the 40-year-old Cranston was discovered buried on a ranch east of Kingman Jan. 7.
As the events unfolded that led to Sid’s disappearance and the eventual discovery of his remains, many people helped search for him – some who had never met him – and TV shows and news programs aired stories about his disappearance. The FBI, local law enforcement agencies and a private investigator interviewed numerous individuals.
As Cranston’s passing nears its second anniversary, 66-year-old Sidney Cranston Sr., Sid’s dad, will honor and remember his son by making a four-day, 2,850-mile journey on his 1991 BMW R100RT touring motorcycle from Wilson, New York to Kingman. He plans on departing New York during the early morning hours Monday and roll into Kingman Thursday evening.
“This is the longest ride I have ever attempted, although I have more than 126,000 miles on my bike,” said Sid Sr. “Prior to this trip, I had only made a road trip to Georgia and a couple to North Carolina to visit my son, Chris. But the most memorable trip for me was with Sid Jr. during 2009, when we rode together with 20 other bikers from New York to Washington, D.C. for Rolling Thunder – Run To The Wall.”
While in Kingman, Sid’s dad will spend about a week visiting with many of his son’s friends and associates, participate in the Sidney Cranston Jr. Memorial Ride Friday, and then he will carry Sid’s ashes back to New York on his motorcycle.
According to Sid’s brother, Chris, he also plans on being in Kingman for the memorial ride and to visit with his brother’s friends and associates before returning to North Carolina where he resides with his family.
Even though Sid Jr.’s disappearance and murder is an extremely high profile case for Mohave County, most people didn’t know much about him, except that he was a successful engineer and Realtor, and he owned between 40 and 50 parcels of property in Mohave County.
Family members called him Little Sid. He was born Oct. 7, 1974, grew up in the small town of Wilson, New York, and attended both Wilson Middle School and Wilson High School.
“My son was pretty much a quiet person, a loner, and could probably be deemed a nerdy kind of guy who enjoyed mathematics,” Sid Sr. said. “Sid really didn’t date much while in high school.
“He spent most of his time focusing on his education, but did take time to be a member of the chess club and was on the wrestling team during his high school years.”
Sid attended Niagara County Community College and then went to Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) majoring in mechanical engineering after he graduated from high school in 1991.
“Sid loved spaghetti and would cook a large batch of it in his dorm room,” his dad reminisced. “Then he would sell plates of it for $2 to the other students living in the dorms, and whatever was leftover, he would eat on it for the rest of the week.”
Sid Jr. received a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from RIT, and he began job searching for employment in the field he had studied. At about the same time, Sid went into business with his longtime friend, Andy Raynor, when they opened a computer store together in New York. They would ultimately open a second location there.
Sid became flustered after a two-year search in New York for employment in his chosen field of mechanical engineering, so he decided to sell his part of the computer business to Raynor and “hit the road” in early 2000 or 2001.
Not allowing any grass to grow under his feet, Sid jumped on his motorcycle and headed off on a new adventure to parts unknown to him by visiting several western states. He ultimately planted his new roots in Kingman in 2003 when he found employment working for a civil engineering firm in nearby Bullhead City.
Sid was always known to be a hard worker establishing long-term goals for himself. While in Mohave County, he got licensed as a civil engineer in both California and in Arizona where he started up a business named Done Right Engineering.
He always wanted to make life better for himself, so he took the real-estate exam and added one more plaque to his resume. He became a Realtor, dabbling in flipping houses, and purchasing properties as rentals for long-term investments.
Sid had numerous vacations in Central America and Mexico. On one such trip, he met a woman named Luna Calderon, who was a Mexican psychologist. He fell in love and proposed to Luna because he said she was “the love of his life.”
Sid even traveled to China where he wanted to check on the possibility of having a kitchen sink manufactured there that he designed and patented.
“Our family wants to thank the community, anyone who prayed, donated money (to help defray the cost of the memorial bench), and those who spent time helping search for Sid,” said Sid’s brother, Chris. “The dedication and help by everyone will never go unnoticed or forgotten by our family.”
Today, Little Sid is in that great engineering and real-estate business in the sky watching over the people who care so much about him.
He will be missed, but never forgotten. He touched the hearts of many people and always attempted to help those in need.
If we all attempt to be like Sid, our lives would be better off.
Sidney Cranston Jr. Memorial Ride
Friday, June 16
The Sidney Cranston Jr. Memorial Ride to commemorate the second anniversary of his disappearance and death is scheduled for Friday.
Friends and family who are participating on the 90-mile memorial ride will gather at 9 a.m. with an expected departure of 9:30 at Mother Road Harley-Davidson, 2501 Beverly Ave.
From Mother Road, the participants (in roadworthy and licensed two-wheeled and four-wheeled vehicles) will head north on Stockton Hill Road to Pierce Ferry Road (east of Dolan Springs), turn left to drive west to U.S. Highway 93. Once at Highway 93, the participants will travel south into Kingman to the finish point – Metcalfe Park located at Grandview Avenue and Beale Street in downtown Kingman.
The memorial ride is for people to get together, remember Sid, and to share their most valued memories and stories about him, the beloved Realtor, friend and family member who was taken prematurely.
There is no cost to participate in the memorial ride, but family members are asking those who can afford it to make a $25 donation to help defray the cost of purchasing a $1,000 iron bench. The bench will be installed in Metcalfe Park adjacent to a “tree of life” the City of Kingman is planting to memorialize Sid.
For those people who can’t make the memorial ride, but would like to donate to help purchase of the bench, they can do so by visiting the Go Fund Me account set up for Sid. The account link is https://www.gofundme.com/sidcranston, or people can drop off or mail their donation for the Sidney Cranston Jr. Memorial Fund, C/O Andy Raynor, Bits N Bytes Computers, 2101 Stockton Hill Road, Kingman, AZ 86401.
For more information about the memorial ride, call Sid’s brother, Chris, at 704-622-9599.