Bruce B. Wilson, 86, a retired senior vice president/general counsel at Conrail, who also worked at the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington D.C., died Wednesday, April 13, from complications of lung cancer at his home in Wayne.

Mr. Wilson clerked for Judge Herbert Goodrich of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and practiced law at the Philadelphia law firm Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads LLP.

For several years during the Nixon Administration, he moved his family to Bethesda, Md., and served as deputy assistant U.S. attorney general of the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division. He returned to Philadelphia in the late 1970s to join Conrail, from which he retired in 1997.

During his lengthy career, he argued before the U.S. Supreme Court and testified several times before Congress.

After retiring, he provided pro bono legal services to a number of organizations and was recently honored as a 60-year member of the Philadelphia Bar Association.

“Throughout his entire life, his community service was amazing,” said Mabeth Wilson Hudson, one of his daughters.

He served on the boards of the Church Farm School in Exton; the Hills at Whitemarsh, a retirement community; and was an officer at his church, St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Wayne.

Mr. Wilson was commodore of the Corinthian Yacht Club of Cape May, even though he did not sail, but his children did. He was also a past president of the Beach Club of Cape May, where the family spent their summers.

“He worked hard to make the world a better place in everything he did. He saw problems and thought, ‘What can we do to make this better?’ ” Hudson said.

Bruce Brighton Wilson was born Feb. 6, 1936, in Boston, but was raised in Pittsburgh. He was the older of two children of Robert L. Wilson, a World War II veteran, and Jane Schlotterer Wilson.

At about age 12, Mr. Wilson received a scholarship to attend St. Mark’s School, a private boarding school in Southborough, Mass. There, he sang in the choral choir, a passion he continued into adulthood.

After St. Mark’s, he graduated from Princeton University in 1958 and from the University of Pennsylvania Law School in 1961, where he received numerous academic honors.

In 1958, he married Elizabeth Ann “Dede” MacFarland, whom he met when she visited Princeton with the debate team from her college. She was also from the Pittsburgh area, and he asked her for a ride home, his daughter said.

They had four children together in a union that lasted 55 years until her 2013 death.

In 2015, he married Mary Bale Wilson, with whom he shared the rest of his life.

Mr. Wilson was known for being very intelligent and had many accomplishments, his children said.

As a child, not only did he have a great singing voice, but he was skilled at baseball.

Hudson relayed a story that Mr. Wilson’s sister, Marilyn Bonner, shared about their childhood:

“We neighborhood kids would play baseball in our backyard. Bruce was amazingly multitalented. He was the manager (of both teams), he could hit home runs batting right-handed or left-handed, and he always broadcast the whole game — even when he was up to bat or pitching or fielding.”

The boy grew up to graduate at the top of his classes at all levels: from high school, college, and law school.

“From a very young age, he was motivated,” said Rob Wilson, his son. “He was a tough act to follow. But he was enormously humble. We didn’t know a lot about [his awards] until after his death.”

He engaged in civic affairs and recently served as chair of the Civil Service Board in Radnor Township.

He was active in the choirs at St. Mary’s, the Church of the Advent Choirs, the Ambler Choral Society, the Ocean Grove Choir, and the Wayne Oratorio Society.

In addition to his son, daughter, and wife, Mr. Wilson is survived by two other daughters, Mary W. Turner and Caroline W. Ellison; three stepchildren: Lucy, Duchie and Posey Bale; 10 grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; a sister; and other friends and relatives. One granddaughter died in 2013.

A service of requiem was held April 22.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m., Sunday, May 29, at Corinthian Yacht Club of Cape May, 1819 Delaware Ave., Cape May, N.J. 08204.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Wayne Senior Center, 108 Station Rd., Wayne, Pa. 19087; St. Mary’s Episcopal Church Choir, 104 Louella Ave., Wayne, Pa. 19087; and C. Wallace Stuard, Jr. Sailing Foundation, 1819 Delaware Ave., Cape May, N.J. 08204.