NEW YORK — Edward M. Stanton, a former reporter and editor at WWD and a retired public relations executive who was active in the fashion and textile industry, died Friday in Miami after suffering a heart attack apparently brought on by malaria. He was 74.
Stanton had been vacationing in South Africa and Botswana with his wife, Mary Ann, who also was diagnosed with malaria. She is in Pan American Hospital in Miami, where her condition Monday was listed as critical.
A graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University, Stanton put in stints with the Associated Press and Westchester-Rockland Newspapers before joining WWD, where he was fur editor, store operations editor and assistant city editor.
He left in 1956 to form Bell & Stanton public relations, which merged with Manning, Selvage & Lee in 1976. He became president of MS&L in 1982 and chairman and chief executive officer in 1985. He retired in 1992, when he and his wife started their own firm.
Among Stanton’s accomplishments was the creation of the American Printed Fabrics Council’s Tommy Awards in 1970. During World War II, he flew 30 bombing missions with the Eighth Air Force. He was also a gifted jazz trumpet player.
In addition to his wife, survivors include three daughters, Lynn Bains, Joan Hilary Zunin and Susan Kane; a son, Tom Stanton; three stepsons, Chris Zimmerman, Peter Zimmerman and Michael Zimmerman; a sister, Lillian Ellenbogen, and five grandchildren.
Services will be scheduled pending the recovery of Mary Ann Stanton.

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