Della B. Quillian, CIA office manager

Della B. Quillian, 92, a retired Central Intelligence Agency office manager and a local watercolor and acrylic artist, died Dec. 9 at her home in McLean.

She had breast cancer, said her daughter, Diane Blackwell.

Mrs. Quillian did secretarial work for a number of private companies before joining the CIA as an office manager in what was then known as the Directorate of Operations, in 1973. She retired in 1987.

After her retirement, Mrs. Quillian pursued painting and won many awards from various art organizations. Her paintings have appeared in private collections in Virginia, Texas, California, Oregon and England.

Della Belle Collier was born in Oakdale, La. In the early 1940s, she worked as a secretary for the Houston Chronicle. She traveled frequently with her husband, a Marine Corps officer, and lived in Texas, California and Hawaii.

Her memberships included the McLean Art Society, Washington Water Color Association, Virginia Watercolor Society and the Art League, a nonprofit group in Alexandria.

Her first husband, Army Air Forces Lt. Ferdinand B. Paris, was killed during a military training exercise in 1942.

Her second husband, retired Marine Corps Col. Stone Quillian, to whom she was married for 61 years, died in 2004. Survivors include two children from her second marriage, Diane Blackwell of Oakton and retired Marine Corps Col. Stone Quillian II of Fredericksburg; and six grandchildren.

— Megan McDonough

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