Donald E. Edwards
South Bristol, ME - Major General Donald E. Edwards died peacefully at his home on Aug. 16, 2018 in South Bristol, Maine. He was born on June 15, 1937 in Bellows Falls, Vermont to Ralph and Anne Edwards. He is the brother of Jane E. Edwards of Maine and father of William E. Edwards (Julie) of South Burlington, Vermont, Edmund E. Edwards (Kirsti) of Bennington, Vermont and four grandchildren, Lillie, Emmett, Annie, and Mai-Liis. Don leaves his beloved wife, Sue, and his step-children Elijah (Tram), Josiah (Cris), Ariadne (Alex), and Nathaniel (Maple).
Don attended Vermont Academy, Norwich University, University of Tennessee, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, U.S. Army War College, and Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government. He served in the U.S. Army in Germany, England and Vietnam. After service in the Army Reserve he was elected Adjutant General of the state of Vermont in 1981. For the next 16 years he commanded the 4000 members of the Army and Air National Guard. He founded the Army Mountain Warfare School and Mountain Battalion. Between leaving active duty in 1971 and being elected to the Adjutant General position, he was a Vermont Legislator, an antique dealer, and realtor. After his military retirement, he served as a Congressional Staff Member to Senator Bernie Sanders and worked as a news commentator and Executive Vice President of an Information Technology company. He retired in 2008. General Edwards was elected President of the The United States Adjutants General Association and Vice President of the National Guard Association of the United States. He served as Chairman of the Norwich University Board of Fellows and the United States Biathlon Association. Edwards was a decorated veteran, receiving the Bronze Star Medal, the Meritorious Service Medal, and the nation's highest peacetime honor, the Legion of Merit. Edwards loved his country and felt national service was an honor and a privilege. He believed war was "not a football game. War is not a tool of foreign policy, it's an absolute failure of foreign policy."
In retirement, Edwards was an avid gardener and life-long sports enthusiast who enjoyed cheering on the Red Sox, Bruins and any team his children or grandchildren played on. He loved the community of South Bristol and felt very fortunate to live in such a beautiful place. A gathering in his honor will be held on Saturday, October 20th at 2:00 pm at Norwich University's Milano Ballroom, Northfield, VT. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Vermont Veterans Memorial Cemetery, 487 Furnace Rd., Randolph Center, VT 05061.
Published in The Burlington Free Press on Aug. 23, 2018.