Edgar Lee Pilkington,79, born to Edgar E. Pilkington and Mary Alma Johnson Pilkington on June 18, 1942, passed away on July 26th, 2021.
He grew up in North Little Rock, Arkansas where he graduated from North Little Rock high school and was a member of the Arkansas National Guard. The day after high school graduation in 1960, he boarded a bus for Army Basic Training and launched himself into adulthood. Ed married Tena Laster Pilkington on June 29, 1962. They moved to Fayetteville, Arkansas where Ed studied at the University of Arkansas, continued in the Army National Guard and Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC), and earned recognition as a Distinguished Military Graduate. Following college graduation, he accepted an Army Officer post stationed in the U.S. and was later sent to Berlin, Germany, where Ed and Tena welcomed their first child, Amy. Soon after, Ed was sent to Vietnam. He recalls the day he left as the most difficult day of his life. After returning home from the war, he pursued his Masters Degree in Education and followed up with further schooling for his Specialist’s Degree. He continued teaching for the Army and the couple welcomed their second child, Kent, in 1971. In 1975, the family moved to Springdale, Arkansas where their third child, Anna, was born. In Springdale, Ed taught at Springdale High School while he finished additional schooling and later served as a founding board member during the launch of Shiloh Christian School. After Shiloh’s inaugural year, Ed served as the Headmaster of Shiloh for the next six years. Following that, he served as the administrator for a number of private schools including: Eastwood Christian School, Pantego Christian Academy, Brazosport Christian School, and Carrollton Christian Academy. In 1998, Ed and Tena decided to start an independent school called Willow Bend Academy in Plano, Texas, where he remained for the next 21 years, flourishing in his role helping students succeed and finding a custom graduation plan that worked for them. His leadership and expertise connected him to international educational projects and missions, serving not only local Texans but also communities in Russia, Honduras, Vietnam, and Guatemala. After his retirement from Willow Bend, he continued doing what he loved - helping students as a tutor at Bridge Builder Academy and at The Tutoring Center, where he actively served until his final day.
Ed Pilkington was a loving and loyal son, husband, father, grandfather, and an active supporter and encourager for the many communities he served. The world lost a very caring, funny, and kind man and heaven has gained a soul who lived life in service to others. Although he was often considered a quiet person, his actions spoke volumes and the news of his passing brings an outpouring of stories from so many people who considered Ed to be a very strong and positive influence on their lives and their faith.
He was preceded in death by his parents and adopted son Gary LaTone Moore.
Ed is survived by his wife Tena, married for 59 years, daughter Amy Pilkington Vest (and Randal Vest), son Kent Pilkington (and Amal Shafik), and daughter Anna Pilkington Roorda (and Kevin Roorda) and daughter-in-love, Janet (Pilkington) Currier. Ed is also survived by 9 grandchildren and a large extended circle of family, friends, students, and coworkers who will miss him greatly.
The Military Memorial Funeral Service will be at the National Cemetery in Dallas on August 27th, 2021 at 9:15 AM. 2000 Mountain Creek Parkway Dallas, TX 75211.
In lieu of flowers, please send donations in the name of Ed Pilkington to Vets with a Mission.
Some of his favorite quotes that also defined how he lived:
Life only guarantees one thing: limited time on this planet. Live every day with gratitude, care for the people in your life, and try to become the best person you can possibly be.
Our spirits are eternal. Our souls are forever. The next time you encounter an elderly person, look at them and know they are still a child, just as you are still a child and children will always need love, attention and purpose.
Every child should be given a chance. It only takes one single adult to point a child toward hope. That adult could be you.
The family would also like to share with family and friends a link to the COVID-19 safety factors: https://amyindallas.wixsite.com/ed-pilkington
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