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David Ede

Sept. 16, 2008

Dr. David Ede, head of the Western Michigan University Department of Comparative Religion and a well-known expert on Islam, died Sept. 13. He was 73.

Ede was a longtime WMU professor, serving as a faculty member since 1970 and holding the rank of associate professor since 1980. He was appointed chair of the Department of Comparative Religion in June 2007. In addition to his teaching duties and, more recently, coordinating his department's activities, he was instrumental in bringing many visiting scholars to campus to make presentations during his WMU career.

Prior to coming to WMU, Ede served as a part-time instructor in the Department of Religion at McGill University and before that was an instructor of religion at Augsburg College in Minneapolis.

Ede earned his doctorate with honors and master's degree, both from McGill University's Institute of Islamic Studies, in 1978 and 1967, respectively. He served as a visiting professor at his alma mater from 1981 to 1982 in the Institute of Islamic Studies. He received bachelor's degrees from Luther Theological Seminary in 1961 and St. Olaf College in 1957.

Ede served as both editor and contributor of the book "Guide to Islam," published in 1983 by Boston-based academic publishing company G.K. Hall. He also was the author of numerous review articles and at least two articles for encyclopedias.

Ede was awarded a WMU Faculty Research Fellowship in summer 1976 and a Melone Fellowship in 1988. Later that year, he was one of 10 professors from three states selected to take part in a four-week study tour of Egypt, sponsored by the National Council on U.S.-Arab Relations.

Viewing is scheduled for 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 20, at the Life Story Funeral Home, 6080 Stadium Drive, in Kalamazoo. A private family funeral service will take place later that day. A campus memorial service is being planned.

Media contact: Cheryl Roland, (269) 387-8400, cheryl.roland@wmich.edu

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