SALAS, EDMUND JOHN, age 87, of Hiram, passed away peacefully in his sleep on Thursday, November 18, 2021, at Wellstar Tranquility at Cobb Hospital in Austell. Edmund, who went by Ed, was a loving husband and a devoted father, grandfather and great-grandfather. He proudly served for 20 years in the U.S. Air Force.
Visitation for Ed will take place at 10 a.m. Tuesday, November 23, 2021, at Clark Funeral Home in Hiram. A funeral mass will follow at noon at St. Vincent De Paul Roman Catholic Church in nearby Dallas, with Father Adrian Pleus presiding. A private military burial with full honors will take place in mid-December at Georgia National Cemetery in Canton.
Ed was born on February 26, 1934, in West Warwick, Rhode Island. His favorite childhood memories included working in his grandmother's general store and digging up clams along Rocky Point and selling them to nearby restaurants from his wagon. He loved baseball and once tried out for the Boston Red Sox. Toward the end of the Korean War, in 1953, he joined the Air Force. His early years in the service included working as a mechanic on experimental aircraft in Amarillo, Texas, and a tour of duty in northern Japan.
While on leave at his Rhode Island home for a wedding in the summer of 1956, he met and fell in love with Noella Yates (née Allard), a young widow with two small children, ages 4 and 5. The couple courted mostly by letter as he moved among various bases before being married a year later. The dashing airman, whom the adoring kids called "Uncle Eddy," now simply became "Dad." By 1969, six more children joined the Salas fold. Those kids would get to see their father's name plastered on the sides of various USAF aircraft as he became a crew chief during his ascent to the rank of master sergeant. His tours of duty included Okinawa (with the whole family in tow), the Philippines, South Korea and Guam. He served in Vietnam during the Vietnam War. After his final assignment at McCoy AFB in Orlando, he retired from the Air Force in 1973 and settled in the Central Florida area for many years. He worked a few odd jobs, including as a technician at Visual Dynamics and as a bread delivery man, before fully retiring in the 1980s. He eventually moved to the Atlanta area in 2013 to be near three of his daughters.
Ed will always be remembered fondly as the savvy money manager who always provided for his family, as "da tret" ("the threat") in highly contested family card games, and as the jolly grandpa (and great-grandpa) who would exclaim "Boop!" as he played with his glasses to amuse two generations. Thank you for your service, retired USAF MSgt Edmund J. Salas - to your country and to your family.
Ed is survived by his wife of 64 years, Noella; sons Donald Yates and Vincent and Randy Salas; daughters Lyette Morris (née Yates), Lori Justus, Robin Stover, Tamra Williams and Danielle Nehring; their spouses; 17 grandchildren; 9 great-grandchildren; and 1 great-great-grandchild (with another on the way).
Memorial donations may be made in Ed’s name to St. Vincent De Paul Roman Catholic Church of Dallas, Georgia.
Clark Funeral Home is honored to care for the family during this difficult time. Condolences for the family may be left on the tribute wall of our website at samclarkfuneralhome.com.