Edison Wilton Midgett is the 2019 Manteo Citizen of the Year. Midgett was born in Buxton back in 1926.
He graduated from Manteo high school at 16, and two weeks after graduation left the laid-back island life to set out on a new adventure with the Merchant Marines, delivering supplies as the U.S. fought in World War II. As soon as he was old enough, Midgett enlisted in the Coast Guard. He’s the great-grandson of Captain Benjamin Baxter Dailey, the first man awarded the Gold Lifesaving Medal.
Midgett and his crew were the last to use the Breeches Boy method of rescue. He was one of the youngest men ever promoted to Chief Boatswain’s Mate at 28, and four weeks later he took command of the 83-foot rescue boat at Ocracoke. He received many medals and letters of appreciation. In 2017, he was awarded the Admiral Award for Excellence.
After retiring from the Coast Guard, Midgett worked at the Dare County Naval Bombing Range. He later helped a family member manage Kitty Hawk Building Supply until the business was sold. Midgett worked at Manteo Furniture Company, where he eventually retired from work but never slowed down.
As a member of Mt. Olivet United Methodist Church, he served on committees, filled the pulpit as a Certified Lay Speaker, taught Sunday School and supported children and youth groups as a counselor. For more than 30 years, he has ministered at the jail by leading weekly Bible study.
In 2017, Midgett was the Long Glass Presenter at the Commissioning Ceremony for the USCG Cutter Benjamin Dailey. This summer the newest USCG Cutter Midgett will be commissioned.
Midgett received his Citizen of the Year award on Dare Day.