Edward H. "Ham" Welbourn Jr., a retired insurance executive and World War II veteran, died April 29 of complications from dementia at the Blakehurst retirement community in Towson. He was 98.
The son of Edward H. Welbourn, who owned Rennous Kleinle Brush Manufacturers in Catonsville, and Emma Dawson Welbourn, a homemaker, Edward Hambleton Welbourn was born in Baltimore and raised in Catonsville.
After graduating in 1934 from the Gilman School, Mr. Welbourn enrolled at Haverford College, where he was a government major and earned a bachelor's degree in 1938. At Haverford, he was captain of the baseball team and played soccer.
In 2007, he was inducted into the Thomas Glasser '82 Hall of Achievement at Haverford, which recognizes athletes.
After graduating from Haverford, be began working in the insurance industry in Philadelphia and then returned to Baltimore.
He was drafted into the Army in 1941 and was a graduate of field artillery officer candidate school. He attained the rank of captain and was appointed battery commander of the 228th Field Artillery.
Mr. Welbourn landed a few days after the June 6, 1944, D-Day invasion at Normandy. His decorations included the Silver Star, Bronze Star and Air Medal.
"He was a modest man and never was one to magnify his military achievements," said his son, Edward H. Welbourn III of Owings Mills. "When faced with a difficult task, he would occasionally mention that the challenge was nothing compared to living in a foxhole for months on end."
After the war, Mr. Welbourn enlisted in the Maryland National Guard, attaining the rank of major.
He returned to the insurance business and worked for Connecticut General Life Insurance as a vice president until retiring in the late 1980s.
A longtime resident of Garrison, Mr. Welbourn enjoyed tennis, golf, bicycle riding and ocean sailing, and frequently competed in the Newport, R.I.-to-Bermuda race. He also enjoyed spending winters at the Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo, Fla.
A resident of Blakehurst since 1999, Mr. Welbourn was a communicant of St. Thomas Episcopal Church, where he had been a member of the vestry and had taught Sunday school for more than two decades.
He was a volunteer at Paul's Place, where he was a kitchen worker, Genesis Jobs, and the Habitat for Humanity of South Florida.
Mr. Welbourn was a member of the Green Spring Valley Hunt Club, Bachelors Cotillon, Ocean Reef Club and the Society of Colonial Wars.
A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. June 1 at his church, 232 St. Thomas Lane, Owings Mills.
In addition to his son, Mr. Welbourn is survived by his wife of 62 years, the former Nancy Parker; two daughters, Lucy Welbourn Johnson of Charlottesville, Va., and Nancy Welbourn Edds of Fargo, N.D.; eight grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.Copyright © 2015, CT Now