Nylen W. Edwards
COLUMBIA — Dr. Nylen W. Edwards died Friday, April 8, 2011, in Columbia. He was 90.
Dr. Edwards was born on March 23, 1921, in Las Animas, Colo., to Victor and Bertha Edwards.
In 1942, Dr. Edwards received his bachelor's degree in education from Central Missouri State Teachers College. After graduation he enlisted in the Navy and became a Lieutenant. He was the lead navigator for a B-24 Photographic Bomber Squadron in the South Pacific and earned several Theatre Stars and Distinguished Air Medal awards.
Dr. Edwards received his bachelor's degree in aeronautical administration in 1947 from Auburn University and his master's degree in business administration from the University of Marylandin 1948. He specialized in transportation and marketing.
In 1953, he became an assistant professor of marketing, logistics and transportation at MU. He received his doctorate from Indiana University in 1957. Dr. Edwards became a full professor and served as the assistant dean for MU's College of Business and Public Administration for five years. He taught at MU from 1953 until 1985 when he retired as a professor emeritus.
Dr. Edwards was active in Columbia's First Presbyterian Church. He was also president of the Downtown Kiwanis Club and a regional officer for Kiwanis International.
Fellow church and Kiwanis member Bob Parks first met Dr. Edwards when he joined the church in 1994. Parks said Edwards, who he knew as "Eddie," was one of the first people he met at First Presbyterian.
“He was interested in other people and was very active in the church,” Parks said. “He was also a do-er and was instrumental in forming the Memorial Trust Fund in the Kiwanis Club. The club and the church were both very important to him.”
Parks said Dr. Edwards was responsible for getting him involved with the club, which showed how interested he was in getting new people involved.
Dr. Edwards was also the founder of the Daniel Boone Little League and served as its president and umpire-in-chief for many years.
Dr. Edwards is survived by three sons, Michael of Evanston, Ill., James Christopher of Kansas City, Mo., and Steven of Fort Leavenworth, Kan.; seven grandchildren; and one great-grandson.
His wife, Helen Abel Edwards, died earlier.
Visitation will be from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.Saturday, April 30, at Memorial Funeral Home, 1217 Business Loop 70 W. A memorial service will follow. The Rev. Kathie Jackson of First Presbyterian Church will officiate.
Military honors will be performed at his graveside service.
Donations can be made to the Columbia Kiwanis Foundation, P.O. Box 158 Columbia, MO 65205.
Tributes can be left online at memorialfuneralhomeandcemetery.com.