BULKELEY, Edward Root
Edward Root Bulkeley died at home in Great Barrington, Massachusetts on September 3, 2013. He was 92 years old.
Born in Hartford, Connecticut on August 17, 1921, Ed was the youngest son of Ruth Lee Collins and Morgan Gardner Bulkeley, Jr. Ed's father, an officer in World War I, died when Ed was four years old, and Ed and his two brothers, Morgan III and William, were raised by their mother in Hartford, spending summers in Fenwick on the Connecticut coast.
In 1940, Ed graduated from Hotchkiss School, and entered Yale College that fall. After the Japanese bombing of Pearl Harbor in 1941, he enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Force, and was commissioned as an officer. He piloted a B-26 Martin Marauder bomber in the 9th Air Force, 386th Bomb Group, 552nd Bomb Squadron, flying in the European theater.
On June 6, 1944, Ed piloted his bomber during the D-Day invasion of Normandy. General Omar Bradley chose his bomb group to drop the last bombs on Utah Beach before troops landed because it had the best record for accuracy. Due to low cloud cover, they were forced to fly at 2,500 feet, and his plane was attacked by a German Messerschmitt 109 which was successfully repulsed. Fifty years later, he returned to Normandy with his wife and visited the graves of friends in the American military cemetery.
Altogether, Ed flew 72 missions over Europe, completing his first tour of duty with 50 missions and then re-enlisting shortly before D-Day and flying an additional 22 missions. Ed was very proud that none of his crew ever received a Purple Heart.
He subsequently served as an instructor pilot and test pilot for the U.S. Air Force until the end of the war.
For his World War II military service, Ed was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal with 13 oak leaf clusters, among other medals.
In September 1945, Ed returned to Yale from which he graduated in 1947. Due to his wartime service, he remained in the class of 1944.
In 1949, Ed married Francis Howe Hazen, and they had three children: Nancy (Crocker), Edward, and Thomas. Ed worked first in the production engineering department of Pratt & Whitney Aircraft, and then at Hart Manufacturing Company in Hartford, where he served as director and vice president for administration until retiring in 1961. Thereafter, Ed was an investor, generously using his expertise for his extended family and friends.
Ed and Fran had homes in West Hartford, Fenwick, and on Doolittle Lake in Norfolk, Connecticut. Later they moved to North Egremont, Massachusetts, where Fran died in 1977.
Ed was treasurer and then president and trustee of the Albert Schweitzer Center in Great Barrington, Massachusetts. He presided over its merger into the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship of Boston, of which he became a director.
In 1987, Ed married Suzanne Sangree Tillinghast of Brookline and Mount Washington, Massachusetts. Eventually, they moved to Great Barrington and Mount Washington.
Ed loved to garden, and his North Egremont garden was included in the book American Gardens: A Tour of the Nation's Finest Private Gardens, by Peter Loewer, published by Simon & Schuster.
Ed was an excellent golfer, winning Fenwick's Morgan Cup when he was just 16 years old, and playing until he was 91 with his sons and his sons-in-law Morgan Bulkeley IV, Tony Blair, and Co Crocker. He loved sailing with his children and their families, and, later, with his son-in-law Alex Dubitsky. He and his wife treasured their times with their family.
Ed's ancestor, Peter Bulkeley, arrived in the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1635, and was a leading Puritan minister and a founder of the town of Concord, Massachusetts. Ed's great grandfather, Eliphalet Adams Bulkeley, founded Aetna Life Insurance Company, and his grandfather, Morgan G. Bulkeley, was president of that company, a governor and U.S. senator of Connecticut, and first president of the National Baseball League.
In addition to his wife, sons, and sons-in-law, Ed leaves his daughters-in-law Paivi Nummela and Nancy Mella Bulkeley, and his four Tillinghast step-daughters: Eleanor, Elizabeth, Rebecca, and Pamela. He also leaves twelve grandchildren and step-grandchildren, and a great-grandson. He was predeceased by his first wife, his daughter, and a granddaughter, Rebecca Crocker, and his two brothers.
A memorial service to celebrate his life will be held at the Mount Washington Church of Christ at noon on Sunday, Sept. 22, 2013. Donations in his memory may be made to the Albert Schweitzer Fellowship and to HospiceCare in the Berkshires through FINNERTY & STEVENS FUNERAL HOME, 426 Main Street, Great Barrington, MA 01230. Remembrances may be sent to the family through www.finnertyandstevens.com.