Edward Allen Clarke was born in Coatesville, Pennsylvania on March 22, 1948. Prior to beginning his elementary school education his family relocated to nearby Downingtown. Edward was a member of West Chester’s Henderson High School class of 1966.
After completion of school, Edward was employed by the A&P supermarket in Downingtown until being drafted into the Army in April, 1968. At the completion of his 8-week basic training, he was selected to attend advanced individual training in the Artillery Branch at Fort Sill, OK. He graduated as a Cannon Crewmember and was qualified to operate both the 105 millimeter and 155 millimeter Howitzer cannons.
On November 28, 1968 he reported to his combat assignment in Vietnam with C Battery, 2nd Battalion, 319th Artillery Regiment, 101st Airborne division which was operating in Thua Thien Province just south of the demilitarized zone.