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Edward L. Wilkinson
December 3, 1929 ~ September 25, 2023 (age 93) 93 Years Old
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Captain Edward L. Wilkinson, (USN – Retired) passed away in Westlake, Ohio on September 25, 2023, following a long illness. Captain Wilkinson was a 31-year military veteran whose career started with the US Marines in Parris Island in 1948, before attending Navy Flight Training and receiving his commission and wings in the US Navy as a designated Naval Aviator in 1951. He flew 40 combat missions in Korea, starting in early 1953. He was a flight instructor in both propellor and jet aircraft at Beeville, TX from 1954-57. He also held squadron assignments in VP-772, VP-17, VP-21, VP-30 and VP18, and was the commanding officer of VP-21, 1967-68. He attended the US Navy Postgraduate School, completing General Line School in 1961 and graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in 1963, and was the US Navy attendee of the 1969 class of the Army War College. Following the War College, he served in BUPERS as a major staff placement officer. He was the Executive Officer and Commanding Officer of NAS Memphis, from 1971-73 and 1974-77, respectively. His final tour in the Navy was as the Deputy/Chief of Staff, CNTECHTRA, Memphis, retiring in 1979. During his Navy career, he received many awards, including two Legions of Merit, the Air Medal, the National Defense Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the Korean Service Medal, and the United Nations Medal.
After retiring, Captain Wilkinson joined First Tennessee Bank, serving as a branch manager, before becoming a Vice President responsible for 17 branches, and finally the President of the Millington Tennessee First Tennessee Bank. He was extremely involved in both the Millington and Memphis communities and was a strong supporter of the Boy Scouts of America program in both communities. As a member of St. Anne’s Episcopal Church, Captain Wilkinson served for many years on the vestry, including terms as both Junior Warden and Senior Warden. He was also an active member of numerous military organizations including the Association of Naval Aviators, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Military Order of the World Wars, the Military Officers Association of America, and the Disabled American Veterans organization. Retirement hobbies included golf, travel, landscaping, and marksmanship. He and his wife moved to Westlake, Ohio in 2011 to be closer to family.
He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Marlene, son Edward Jr., daughters Martha Truchon (Mark) and Mary Ohara, grandchildren Patrick, Megan Lukes (Joey), Justin, and Alyssa, great grandchild, Cameron, and his sister, Lela Ann Holder. His family is very proud of his accomplished career and will remember him as an amazing father and grandfather, who made his family his priority above all things. Interment will be on November 22, 2023, at 11:15am at Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery in Seville. Liston Funeral Home, North Ridgeville, Ohio, is serving the family. Memorial contributions are suggested to The Disabled American Veterans (DAV) National Service Foundation, nsf.dav.org/ways-to-give/methods-to-donate/.