Edward Nixon, the youngest and last surviving brother of former President Richard Nixon, died Wednesday at a skilled nursing facility in Bothell, Washington, at the age of 88, an Orange County-based spokesman for the family announced.
The Whittier native, a career geologist and expert on global energy use, worked on his brother’s successful presidential campaigns in 1968 and 1972. He was an original member of the board of directors of the Richard Nixon Foundation, and in 2009 published his first and only book, “The Nixons: A Family Portrait.”
Tricia Nixon Cox and Julie Nixon Eisenhower, daughters of the former president, released a joint statement calling their uncle “our family’s rock” since the death of their father 25 years ago.
“The fifth and youngest son of Frank and Hannah Nixon was born with a practical mind and an ever-present, unassuming smile. During his 88 years, he was an ideal mentor and source of strength, whether in the Navy, as a distinguished member of the scientific community, or on his goodwill journeys all across the world,” they said. “He was a source of guidance to our father, whose favorite little Eddie grew up into a renowned geologist with an infectious curiosity. He was always thinking, always working — never for his own benefit, but to uncover the answers to questions that science poses in our world.”
Edward Calvert Nixon, the fifth and youngest son of Frank and Hannah Nixon, served in the U.S. Navy as an aviator, helicopter flight instructor, assistant professor of Naval Science at the University of Washington, and naval reserve captain.
Nixon earned a master’s degree in geological engineering from North Carolina State University, Raleigh, and a bachelor’s degree in geology from Duke University. He served as president of Nixon World Enterprises Inc., and chairman of the Pyron Solar Advisory Board in San Diego, and traveled around the world six times.
He is survived by his daughters Amelie “Amy” Peiffer and Elizabeth “Beth” Matheny. His wife of 57 years, Gay Lynne Nixon, died in 2014.
Information on funeral services will be released in the coming days, according to Joe Lopez of the Richard Nixon Foundation.