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Who Ed Wallace; Sunshine Boys
What Ed Wallace, 90, Last Surviving Member of Sunshine Boys
When August 5, 2014
Where McDonough, GA

Edward F. Wallace, age 90, of McDonough, GA died Tuesday, August 5, 2014. He was born in Atlanta, GA to the late Euris Alvin and Alice Lena Wallace.

Ed was a graduate of Russell High School and Georgia Tech.

The Sunshine Boys were formed in 1942 in Atlanta, GA. Ed was a student at Georgia Tech while working with the Sunshine Boys at WSB Radio. Their program was carried on a 19-Station East Coast Network. During the World War II years, the group worked extensively for the United States Government selling war bonds, doing USO shows and working military bases. They were awarded a citation by the United States Treasury Department in 1944 for their very successful war bond sales.

Following the war, they signed a contract with PRC Studios in Hollywood to do a series of movies with Eddie Dean and Lash Larue. In 1946, they transferred to Columbia Studios where they made movies with Charles Starrett - The Durango Kid. They made 19 movies over a period of six years.

In September 1948, The Sunshine Boys did the first live telecast of WSB-TV from the downtown Rich's Department Store and then did regular TV shows until 1949.

In 1950, they signed a contract with Langworth Transcription Company where they were syndicated on over 600 radio stations around the world. Over a period of 8 years they recorded over 800 songs for Langworth and had a daily radio show on Radio Free Europe.

In 1951, The Sunshine Boys, along with Red Foley, recorded the first gospel record to top the million mark in sales entitled "Peace in the Valley". In 1955, The Sunshine Boys were signed by General Foods and sponsored nationwide by Minute Rice on all ABC Radio stations in the United States.

Ed and The Sunshine Boys have been honored by:

  • Having their Star placed in the "Walkway of the Stars"
  • Inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame in 1985
  • Presented the Living Legend Award in 1995
  • Ed was inducted into the Southern Gospel Piano Roll of Honor in 1998
  • In July 2005, Ed was awarded the first annual dub "Cannonball" Taylor Western Film Award for his participation and furtherance of cowboy movies.
  • In September 2005, The Sunshine Boys were inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.
  • In October 2005, Ed was inducted into the Southern Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.
  • On March 6, 2007, The Sunshine Boys 1951 recording of "Peace In The Valley" with Red Foley was selected for the prestigious National Recording Registry in Washington, D.C.

Ed served as chairman of the Henry County Board of Elections for 24 years from 1978 to 2002. Ed is a former chairman of the Henry County Chamber of Commerce and served for 16 years on their Executive Board of Directors. He was a former member of Henry County Rotary club for 10 years, and the owner of B & E Electric Company for 30 Years.

Ed is survived by his wife of 55 years: Genny Wallace; children: Kimberly Wallace (Ken) Harris; Deborah Wallace (Dennis) Patterson; Edward F. Jr., (Robin) Wallace; grandchildren: Chad Bishop; Stephanie Hunt; Kevin Wallace; Jonathan Holmes; Kristin Edmunds; Mark Patterson; Scott Patterson; great-grandchildren: Wyatt Hunt; Brooke Edmunds; Lauren Edmunds; siblings: Fred Wallace; Alice Whittle and Frances Ivey.

Memorial Services will be held at 11:00am on Saturday, August 9, 2014 at Chapel of Cannon Cleveland Funeral Directors with Rev. Dave Riley, Rev. Dr. Tommy Green and Rev. James H. Miller.

The family will receive friends Friday, August 8, 2014 from 6:00-9:00pm at the funeral home. Interment will follow at Fairview Memorial Gardens, 164 Fairview Road, Stockbridge, GA 30281.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Ed's honor to Sacred Journey Hospice, 138 Peach Drive, McDonough, GA 30253.

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Atlanta Journal-Constitution


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