Aubrey E. Atkinson, 58, a retired Navy commander and president of H.B. Atkinson Co. Inc., wholesale distributors in Alexandria, died of leukemia Thursday at Fairfax Hospital. He lived in Catharpin, Va.
A veteran of World War II, Mr. Atkinson saw duty as a Navy fighter squadron pilot in the Asian-Pacific theater after receiving his commission in June 1944. After the war, he served in occupied Japan and as a flight instructor in Corpus Christi, Tex.
He later saw duty as a landing signal officer aboard aircraft carriers, including the USS Coral Sea. In 1962, he served as assistant air officer and aviation safety officer aboard the aircraft carrier USS Independence. Mr. Atkinson's other assignments included tours as commanding officer of a fleet tactical support squadron and as a staff officer at the naval air station in Jacksonville, Fla., and at the Navy's Office of Information in Washington.
Before retiring in 1963, he was assigned to a naval air training squadron in Corpus Christi.
A native of Crewe, Va., and a former resident of Falls Church, Mr. Atkinson moved to the Washington area after retiring and became a partner in his brother's firm, H.B. Atkinson Co. Inc.
He attended the Naval Line School in Monterey, Calif., and the advanced Naval Training School at George Washington University, where he earned a degree in business administration. tMr. Atkinson had served on the board of Epworth United Methodist Church in Falls Church and was a member of the Methodist Men's Club.
He also was a member of the Retired Officers Association and the Boat Owners Association of the U.S. He was an associate member of the Capital Yacht Club and an honorary colonel of the State of Kentucky.
Survivors include his wife, Wilma, of Catharpin; two daughters, Linda LeRoy of Haymarket, Va., and Peggy Bengel of Burke; his stepmother, Lillian Atkinson of Farmville, Va.; a brother, H.B. Atkinson of Arlington; a sister, Nora Fletcher of Bella Vista, Ark., and five grandchildren.
The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the Leukemia Society of America.