At 19-years-old, Warren E. Wilhide, Sr. joined the U.S. Army with his best friend Rollo. The two did their Basic Training in Fort Knox, Kentucky, and were stationed in Korea from 1951 until 1954.
While serving in Korea, Warren participated in four major military operations from Chuncheon Air Base. His duties included delivering supplies from Chuncheon to the troops on the front lines, sometimes in extreme winter conditions. He also worked with the Korean people to build vital roads, cut down trees for firewood and restore a local church where the soldiers joined in for Christmas worship.
When Warren completed his overseas duty, he and other GIs returned stateside on a military airplane. After he was dropped off in Baltimore for his next duty station, the plane continued its flight, but crashed during the journey, killing all on board.
During his rotation back in the U.S., he was assigned to an anti-aircraft battery defending the White House and the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., until his honorable discharge. Mr. Wilhide is the recipient of the United Nations Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Korean War Service Medal with four bronze service stars and the Good Conduct Medal.
Following military service, he earned an engineering degree from Johns Hopkins University before going on to work for various companies including Booz Allen & Hamilton, Quantum, Golightly, WR Grace, AT&T and Western Electric. He also ran his own consulting business, Warren & Associates. He was presented with Johns Hopkins University’s prestigious "Heritage Award" where he was highly active in the Alumni Association and always looked forward to the annual Homecoming Reunions.
He married the love of his life, Carol, who was the sister of his best friend Rollo. Warren and Carol raised three children in Morris Township.
He was known for both local and international volunteer efforts. Warren gave back to those less fortunate by doing earthquake relief in Haiti, volunteering at a children’s hospital in Morocco and teaching in Kilimanjaro. He was active at his church, Hilltop Presbyterian in Mendham. He was a member of the Korean War Veterans group of American Legion Post #59. In 1988, he worked with the late Sen. Anthony R. Bucco and others to designate Route 287 in honor of Korean War veterans. He continued to work on behalf of fellow service members to secure additional designations along the interstate.
In 2003, the Harter Road portion of Route 287 was posthumously designated as the Warren E. Wilhide Interchange through legislation passed by Senator Anthony M. Bucco and Acting Governor Nicholas Scutari.
A seasoned world traveler, Warren traced his family roots back to Schwaigern, Germany and visited the local church in town to confirm his findings. He traveled on the Trans-Siberian Railroad across Russia & Mongolia to China. He took a high-altitude pressurized train across the mountains in China to Lhasa, Tibet, and became a member of the Polar Bear Club in Barrow, Alaska, when he went swimming in the ice-cold Arctic Ocean. Warren would meet with senior executives at work one day and fly to Dharamsala with the Dalai Lama on another day.
Wherever Warren went, especially to many of the places he planned to go with Carol (who sadly passed in 2008), he would take a photo of them together for a selfie picture, and update his annual Christmas Card.
Warren E. Wilhide, Sr. died in 2020 at age 88.
His motivation in service and in life came through the John Maxwell Edmonds epitaph:
"When you go home, tell them of us and say, for your tomorrow, we gave our today."