Lyman, or Ed as he was known, was born in Wauwatosa, Wisconsin to Lyman and Naomi Wheeler. He attended school in Wauwatosa, Washington, and Lee, VA and graduated from Piedmont, CA High in 1949. He then attended San Jose State and graduated with a degree in Aeronautics and a commission as a 2nd Lt in the USAF.
His military career started in 1948 in the Active Navy Reserve. He was called to active duty in the USAF in January 1954. He retired in 1973 after serving in the Strategic Air Command or SAC where he flew the B-36, B-50, B-47 and the B-52 for thirteen years. He served in Vietnam flying 165 missions in the EC-47 being awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross, 4 Air Medals, and the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry.
After retirement, he served as Assistant City Manager of Turlock, CA, City Manager of Newman, CA, and Director of Administration for MedicAlert Int.
He was deeply involved in the Castle Air Museum, Kiwanis, Masons, and the Methodist Church.
He is survived by his loving and supporting wife of 57 years, Patricia “Pat” Ann Balogh Wheeler, three daughters, Doreen Fanning, Susan Harrill, and Sharon Orozco. He is also survived by 6 grandchildren and 7 great grandchildren, and caregiver and friend, Karin.
A memorial service will be held at the First United Methodist Church 1660 Arbor Way, Turlock, CA on Friday, August 21, 2015, at 11:30 a.m. with private interment at the San Joaquin Valley National Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to The Castle Air Museum, Shriner’s Hospital, or the First United Methodist Church.