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Edward Ashford

Personal Data

Date of Birth: Unknown
Date of Death: July 1968
Gender: Male
Height: Unknown
Weight: Unknown
Blood Type: Unknown
Nationality: British
Ethnicity: Caucasian

Title

Edward Ashford

Dr. Edward Ashford was the only son of Arthur Ashford and the 5th generation head of the aristocratic Ashford family. He was a discoverer of the Progenitor virus and was a founder of the Umbrella Corporation. 1

History

At some point, Ashford attended university and graduated with a doctorate. He thereafter immersed himself into the field of virus research.

Progenitor Virus Discovery (1960-1966)

During the 1960s, Ashford began actively searching for a virus with the ability to promote organic evolution. His belief in the existence of such a virus was supported by his research on conventional viruses.

In September 1966, Ashford participated in an expedition with his fellow aristocrat Oswell E. Spencer and biochemist James Marcus. Spencer talked of a flower called "Stairway of the Sun" used in a ritual of the Ndipaya tribe which could grant those who ingested it superhuman capabilities. Marcus asserted that these capabilities were possibly caused by a virus able to recombine DNA.

In West Africa, the expedition team entered an isolated cave system leading to the Ndipaya's ancient underground city. They discovered the Progenitor virus on December 4, 1966. 2 The virus itself inhabited the flower described in the Natural History Conspectus. Some time after, Ashford quickly grasped the initial lead in the t-Virus Project, the development of an improved variant strain of the Progenitor virus for military application in the production of a new form of biological weapon dubbed "B.O.W. (Bio Organic Weapon)."

Umbrella (March 1968)

In March 1968, Ashford agreed to become a joint entrepreneur with Marcus and Spencer at the latter's request. He used his family's wealth to help establish the pharmaceutical company "Umbrella Pharmaceuticals" as a means to camouflage the t-Virus Project.

Ashford initially held significant power within Umbrella over his co-founders due to his research laying the foundation of the t-Virus Project. At the beginning, he conducted joint-research on the virus with his son Alexander, however, his son soon gave up as a virus researcher and chose the path of genetic engineering and began the "CODE:Veronica Project" to clone their ancestor Veronica Ashford. Edward was aware of his son's project, but did not participate.

Ashford's position in Umbrella increased the Ashford family's fame around the world and it prospered under his leadership. The t-Virus Project became a battle of results between the three founders, and as part of his rivalry with Spencer, he requested the design documents of Spencer's mansion in the Arklay Mountains from George Trevor and incorporated these designs into the Ashford family manor in England.

Death (July 1968)

In July 1968, Ashford was accidentally infected with the Progenitor virus and died, leaving his research in the hands of his son Alexander. This accident was in truth an assassination orchestrated by Spencer to increase his own power within Umbrella. With Edward's death, the Ashford family name quickly declined under his son's leadership and his once prosperous research began to lag behind the rest of Umbrella. 3

Even after death, Ashford was highly revered. Whenever research within the Arklay Laboratory came to a deadlock, his absence was notably felt among the senior researchers. 4 The failure of his son to live up to his example resulted in Spencer's influence growing by the day and tarnishing the Ashford family name in the process, undoing virtually everything he had worked for.

Footnotes

  1. 1. biohazard archives (Page 156)
  2. 2. Marcus' Diary 1
  3. 3. Alexander's Memoir
  4. 4. Wesker's Report II (ALEXIA-I)