Edward Hooton, Jr.
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1923 - 2013
Edward Hooton Jr. of Pensacola, FL, passed peacefully on September 18, 2013. He was born on October 7, 1923 in Elizabeth, New Jersey. He graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in Elizabeth and joined the Army Air Corp. at the age of 18. Ed attended flight training school at Maxwell Field, Alabama and upon completion in 1943 was assigned to the 8th Army Air Force based in England where he flew both the B-17 and B-24 heavy bombers. During the war Captain Hooton flew 30 missions in the B-24 Liberator earning him the American Campaign medal, the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign medal, and the World War Two Victory medal. He was also awarded the Air Medal with three Oak Leaf Clusters, and the Distinguished Flying Cross for extraordinary achievement and courage. Ed's most memorable mission was being in the first wave of planes to fly over France during D-Day.
After the war, Ed attended Rutgers University and graduated in 1949 with a Bachelor's Degree in Mechanical Engineering. In 1950 he joined the DuPont Company as an area engineer at Niagra Falls Construction and was then assigned to the Chemstrand nylon plant in Pensacola as Field Superintendent. In 1954 Ed transferred to DuPont's Experimental Station in Wilmington, Delaware serving as Field Project Manager and then Superintendent of Construction's Economy Planning Section. In 1960 he was transferred to Waynesboro, Virginia where he was Field Project Manager in charge of construction of the company's first "Lycra" spandex fiber plant. In 1963 Ed was the Field Project Manager for major expansions of the Chattanooga nylon plant and in 1965 he became District Superintendent handling the nylon plant projects for the Chattanooga, Martinsville, Seaford, and Spruance plants. In 1967 he was named Process Engineering Manager in the Design Division and in 1968 served as Manager of the Business Methods and Investment Division at DuPont Headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware. In 1972 Ed was transferred to the Remington Arms Company in Bridgeport, Connecticut as Director of Production for seven of Remington's plants. He was subsequently promoted to Vice-President in charge of production of the Remington Arms Company until he retired in 1986. After retiring, Ed returned to his first love, construction, and worked for several years with a company rebuilding the dormitories at Yale University.
During his career Ed maintained his commercial pilot's license, was a member of the Confederate Air Force, and remained active in the Air Force Reserves retiring at the rank of Major.
Remembering his earlier years in Florida, the sun, beach, scuba diving, spear fishing, and sailing, Ed moved back to Pensacola in 1991 and became active in the Coast Guard Auxiliary where he taught navigational courses, participated in many flotillas, and volunteered duty at the lighthouse. He was also a volunteer at the N.A.S. Aviation Museum. Ed was a 32nd degree Scottish Rite Mason and member of the Shriners' Hadji Temple. He served as Wagonmaster, Master Traveller, and was a member of the State Board of Florida for the NCT. Ed regularly visited the Shriners Children's Hospitals in Florida, Louisiana, and Texas.
He is preceded in death by his parents Ed and Sarah Hooton; sister Audrey Eriksen and husband Bob; daughter Barbara Lombard, and son-in-law Pete Walsh.
Ed is survived by his wife Ruth; son Dr. Jeff Hooton and wife Belinda, their daughters, Babbette Adcock and her son Reed, Sage Hooton, Maurie Loflin and husband John Reed, and Ainslea Hooton; daughter Lorraine Walsh and her daughters, Kim and Jessica Walsh; daughter Carol and husband Dr. Bob Mead, their son Philip and wife Rebecca, and their daughters Ashlee and Trisha Mead; daughter Irene Talley, her son Jim Talley Jr, and her daughter Kim Stargatt and husband Danny; niece Donna Eriksen; nephew Ed Eriksen; and grandchildren Lisa, Jeff, and Gary Lombard.
Trahan Family Funeral Home entrusted with arrangements.
A memorial service will be held at Barrancas National Cemetery aboard Pensacola N.A.S., Monday Sept 30th at 11:00am.
In lieu of flowers the family asks that donations be made to the Hadji Shrine Transportation fund (established for transportation of those children requiring Shriners Hospital Services) or to Shriners Hospital International.
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Published in Pensacola News Journal from Sept. 27 to Sept. 29, 2013