Audrey E. Dempsey, military wife, volunteer

February 13, 2013

Audrey E. Dempsey, 97, a military wife and volunteer, died Jan. 26 at the Sunrise assisted-living center in Washington.

She had complications from pneumonia, her daughter Jean D. Wolf said.

She was born Jean Audrey Emanuel in Quebec City, and she grew up in Toronto. Her father was a science-fiction writer, Victor Rousseau Emanuel. She moved to New York in the early 1930s.

From 1946 until 1976, she accompanied her husband of 33 years, James Charles Dempsey, on military assignments. James Dempsey, a retired Navy rear admiral, died in 1979.

She was a former president of the English-Speaking Union in Norfolk, and she volunteered with the Navy League there. She moved to the Washington area in 1992 and had been at Sunrise for about eight years.

Her first marriage, to Sydney Wight, ended in divorce. Survivors include three children from her second marriage, Charles Dempsey and Susan Small, both of New York City, and Jean D. Wolf of Chevy Chase; a stepson, James Dempsey of Bethesda; 11 grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.

— Megan McDonough