Edward E. Wilson ’59

Edward E. Wilson ’59, who served in the U.S. Army for 23 years and retired as a lieutenant colonel in 1987, died of complications from cancer at his home in Springfield, Va., on July 29, which was also his birthday. Following his retirement, Wilson taught French, Latin, and other languages at Osborne Park High School in Prince William County, Va., for about 15 years. He also served as chairman of the department of foreign languages for several years. Wilson was born in Charlotte, N.C., where he graduated from Davidson with a degree in linguistics and membership in Phi Beta Kappa. Subsequently, he earned an M.A. from Duke and a Ph.D. from UNC. He was commissioned through ROTC, and began his military service in 1963. His first overseas assignment was in France, and later in his career he served at NATO headquarters in Belgium. Wilson, a career military intelligence officer, served as an advisor to the Vietnamese Army in 1967-68. Other overseas duty included Korea and Iran. In the latter case, he was an advisor to the Iranian Army when the February 1979 revolution overthrew the imperial regime. In the subsequent chaos, among the last official Americans to be evacuated, Wilson got out with only one suitcase and his dog. Among his interests was intelligence history. While teaching career officers at Ft. Huachuca, Ariz., Wilson coauthored a seminal unclassified history, The Evolution of American Military Intelligence. Wilson first lived in northern Virginia in 1963, and he settled permanently in Springfield in 1982. He had no immediate survivors. He was buried in Charlotte, N.C.