George Edwin Albritton passed away peacefully of heart failure on Jan 14, 2014.
He was born May 31, 1921, in Bradley, Fla., and moved with his family to West Lake Wales in September 1921, where they lived on a 28-acre orange grove.
He graduated from Lake Wales High School in 1938, and worked for Johnson Tillman Insurance Company until enlisting in the Army Air Force in 1942.
After Cadet School he became a navigator on B24s and B29s. Overseas duties included 10 missions over Japan from the island of Tinian, serving three years in the Air Force and achieving the rank of captain.
He returned to Lake Wales and helped his brother James tend the orange groves because his dad had become seriously ill. He worked as a representative for the Florida Citrus Commission in New York City for about two years and returned to Lake Wales and opened a Citrus Brokerage business.
He married Barbara Stanland in December of 1949. In partnership with Clifton Brock, he bought the General Electric Appliance business from Jimmy Thornhill in the early 50s. Edwin was a member of the First Baptist Church of Lake Wales for 36 years where he served as a deacon, Sunday School teacher of Intermediate boys, and Training Union Director for Intermediates.
For the past 30 years he has been a member of the First Presbyterian Church of Lake Wales where he served as an Elder and on the Visitation and Finance Committees. He was a member of the Salt Shakers Bible Class and a member and cook for the Men’s Prayer Breakfast.
He became the first member of the newly chartered Lake Wales Lions Club where he served as president, secretary, treasurer, and director. He was active with the Lions Club for 55 years and was named Lion of the Year in 1986-87. He was also awarded the International Melvin Jones Fellow award for dedicated humanitarian services and was given a Life Membership in 1981 in recognition of outstanding service as a Lion. He was employed for 24 years with Lake Wales Citrus Growers Association, starting in the accounting office, becoming the General Manager and serving on the Citrus World board. After retirement he continued on the Citrus World board and also the LWCGA board.
With his sister Mollie Cooper he was named Lake Wales Co-Pioneer of the year in 2004. His favorite hobby was FISHING, and he enjoyed sharing his catches by hosting cookouts for his friends.
After moving to Waters Edge in 2010, he put together his memoirs and published a book entitled “A Life in Florida,” which chronicled his early years in West Lake Wales, his military service and the joy of raising a family in Lake Wales.
He was preceded in death by his wife of 59 years, Barbara.
Survivors include Julie Dale, (Richie), Ocoee, Fla., Robert Albritton (Becky), Wendell, N.C., four grandchildren, James Dale, Kelly Hill (Shawn), Neil Albritton, Anne Albritton, and two great-grandchildren, Hailey and Parker Hill.
Service is at 11 a.m. Friday at First Presbyterian Church of Lake Wales Friday.
Contributions may be made to Good Shepherd Hospice, 105 Arneson Ave., Auburndale, FL 33823, or First Presbyterian Church of Lake Wales, 16 N. 3rd St., Lake Wales, FL 33853.
Condolences may be sent to the family at www.marionnelsonfuneral home.com.
Marion Nelson Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.