Memorial service July 23 for Wilcox Construction founder Al Wilcox

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A celebration of life will be held July 23 for Al Wilcox, founder of Edmonds-based Wilcox Construction, who passed away on July 13. The service will begin at 2 p.m. at the Edmonds United Methodist Church, 828 Caspers St.

Here is the obituary from Beck’s Funeral Home in Edmonds:

Al lived most of his life in the Edmonds area, moving with his family from North Dakota to Alderwood Manor in 1924. He graduated from Edmonds High School in 1939 and was raised at what is now called Wilcox Park in Lynnwood. A star baseball player in high school, Al was catcher and captain of the school baseball team that won the Snohomish County championship in 1939. After high school, he worked as a carpenter and then joined the United States Marine Corps in 1943. He eventually became a fighter pilot and flew F4U Corsair’s with the “Flying Devildogs” in the Philippines, seeing action from Bougainville to Pele lieu.

On an early morning mission his Corsair caught ground fire while flying at tree top level, engulfing his cockpit in flames. Opening the canopy in an attempt to bail out he found he was much to low and inadvertently the prop blast blew out most of the fire and he extinguished the rest with his canteen. Although burned in the fire, he was able to fly his crippled aircraft back to his base. Among his awards for his service in World War II were the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Purple Heart. He was extremely proud of the fact that he was a Marine Fighter Pilot.

Following the war, Al met the love of his life and wife of 64 years, Irene. They had two children, Linda (Sedgley) and Bob. (Bob Wilcox is currently a candidate for Edmonds City Council.) Al returned to the construction industry, eventually founding Wilcox Construction, Inc. in 1963. At the firm he founded, he left a legacy of integrity, quality and respect. The company is still operating today on those same principles.

Al was an avid golfer and a member of Ingelwood Golf Club for 48 years. He loved life and his family and is survived by his wife Irene, sister Lorraine Ross, daughter Linda Sedgley (Rick), son Bob (Debbie), and grandchildren Adam Sedgley (Kristi), Carly Colony (John), Laura Ambrey (Matt), Andrew and Matthew.

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