CAPTAIN Wilbur Edwards USNR (Ret) 73, passed away March 23rd, 2019. He was the son of the late Wilbur E. Edwards, SR and Elsie Lee Brannan Edwards. He was predeceased by his brother Bruce Edwards.
Wilbur was born in Norfolk and graduated from Granby High School in 1964. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1968 with honors and immediately was assigned to Naval Post Graduate School, graduating in 1969. He was assigned to flight school in Pensacola FL and designated a Naval Aviator in 1971. His first assignment was with the HAL 3 Seawolves in Viet Nam flying the venerable H1 Huey Gunship providing helicopter support to Navy SEAL Teams from 1971-72. His early combat experience with the SEALS and HAL 3 paid huge dividends later in his Naval Career. He returned to Norfolk and had various assignments in the HSL (LAMPS) Community until 1978 when he transitioned from active duty to the Naval Reserves. He was assigned to the HAL 4 Redwolves, again flying the H1, Huey Gunship. Due to his earlier HAL 3 combat experience, he held various positions of leadership as a Flight Leader, Weapons and Night Vision Goggles Instructor, with his tour culminating as Commanding Officer of HAL 4 from 1988-89. The Redwolves supported SEAL teams on various assignments in Europe and overseas under Wilbur’s leadership and his earlier experience in Viet Nam was a strong, positive influence on his squadron mates. They had great respect and admiration for him in return. Wilbur retired from the Naval Reserve in 1994.
During his early years in HAL 4, he attended William & Mary Law School. After joining the Virginia State Bar in 1984 he established a thriving practice in Real Estate Law in Virginia Beach. He resided on 78th Street and was a charter member of the 78th Street Beach Bullies. It was there that he met his future wife Katherine Quigley. They were married in 1990 and were soon joined by two daughters Melinda Leigh Edwards and Brannan Barton Edwards.
Wilbur lived life to its fullest and would not miss an opportunity to enjoy the company of his friends and family. The Kempsville Yacht Club events, Old Virginia Beach Athletic Club tournaments, golf outings, Death of Summer parties, 78th Street Beach Bullies’ get-togethers, and Thursday Night cocktails were highlights of his active life.
There will be a memorial service at 2pm on Saturday, May 11th at Altmeyer Funeral Home 5033 Rouse Drive Virginia Beach, Virginia 23462
Memorial donations can be made in Wilbur’s memory to the Virginia Beach Rescue Squad at HERE.
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