Lyon Perry Wilbur of Ponte Vedra Beach passed away peacefully at Brooks Crossing in Jacksonville, Wednesday morning, Jan. 2, 2019. He was born Oct. 17, 1934, in Memphis, TN where he graduated from Central High School in 1952. While there, he was a member of Young America Sings, a weekly radio program, and he sang in the choir at Idlewild Presbyterian Church, where he was a member.
He attended Vanderbilt University and received degrees from Memphis State University, Emory University (theology) and Murray State University (M. Sc.). He acted in plays, including Shakespearean, summer stock and "Unto These Hills", an outdoor drama in Cherokee, NC.
He served in the Navy aboard the Franklin Delano Roosevelt and in the Suez Crisis of 1956 and was transferred in mid-air in the mid-Atlantic from that ship to the John F. Kennedy, on which, as a Lt. Commander, he later served as a speech instructor. Following his graduation from Emory University, he served as assistant pastor of Covenant Presbyterian Church in Whitehaven, TN. He also taught speech at various schools and as a faculty member at Murray State University.
He wrote the words and music for a number of songs and was twice awarded the Freedoms Foundation George Washington Medal of Honor. He wrote and published 31 books on writing and publishing, speaking and speech, literature and religion, many of which are still in print. "Money in Your Mailbox" was a best-seller and another popular one was "Stand Up, Speak Up, Shut Up".
In 1983, he moved to Jacksonville and later to Ponte Vedra Beach. For many years he was a scorer with Pearson Educational Testing. He also continued to write hundreds of articles which were published over the years. Recently, he had been writing for the Internet and had published several articles on "The Rapture".
He leaves behind his two sisters, Barbara L. Wilbur of Williamsburg, VA and Elizabeth W. Goodner (John) of Richmond, VA; nephews, John H. Wilbur (Laurie), and Michael H. Wilbur; and great nephews, Jack Wilbur and Cole Wilbur, all of Ponte Vedra.
Services will be held on Monday, January 7th at 10:00 am at Ponte Vedra Valley, 4750 Palm Valley Road, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project.