Gerry Anderson's U.F.O. Wiki

George Victor "Edward" Bishop as former U.S. Air Force Colonel Edward Straker, the Commander of S.H.A.D.O.

Edward Straker is a former American astronaut and United States Air Force colonel who, in UFO: The Series, is the Commander of S.H.A.D.O., the Supreme Headquarters of the Alien Defence Organisation, an international armed military force organised in secret for the purpose of defending the planet Earth against extra-terrestrial attacks. (George Victor "Edward" Bishop acted out the role in the programme.)

Partial personal history[]

Straker was serving as a colonel in the United States Air Force when he married Mary Nightingale, a secretary in the Ministry of Defence, in December 1970. In that year, unfortunately for his marriage, a high-level officer in the United Kingdom armed forces, General James Henderson (Grant Taylor) of the Minstries of Defence and Aviation, and he were discussing a series of photographs of a UFO attack when they themselves came under such attack from another UFO, which severely injured Henderson. ("Identified" depicts that attack.)

The need for Straker to keep his activities under a lid of the topmost secrecy led to his suspicious in-laws (specifically, Mary's overbearing mother) recruiting a private investigator to follow him, and the investigator caught a female SHADO operative-in-training following Straker into a room where he was conducting the training. This led to his marriage's failure; separation from Mary in March 1972 and eventually divorce in 1977. ("Confetti Check A-OK" provides more details.) His son, John, who had been born of that marriage, would die under especially painful circumstances in late 1980. ("A Question Of Priorities" details those circumstances.)

In 1980, the year in which the series takes place, SHADO is up and running, and Straker is its Commander; he reports to Henderson, who has been elected President of the International Astrophysical Commission. He and Henderson, once good friends, now have definite friction between them--part of this may be blamed on Straker possibly holding Henderson responsible for the destruction of his marriage and his family.


According to the ribbons that adorn Edward Straker's USAF outer tunic in "Identified," he has been awarded the Silver Star, the Legion of Merit, the Distinguished Flying Cross, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Air Force Commendation Medal, the Purple Heart,[1] the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award, the Air Force Good Conduct Medal, the National Defence Service Medal, the United States Korean War Service Medal, the Air Force Longevity Service Medal with one Bronze Oak Leaf, and the United Nations Korean War Service Medal.

  1. This should have been positioned between the Bronze Star and the Air Medal.