Notable deaths in the Washington area

June 7

Obituaries of residents from the District, Maryland and Northern Virginia.

William F. Taylor, engineering technician

William F. Taylor, 77, a retired engineering technician at the Blue Plains Advanced Wastewater Treatment Plant in Washington, died May 15 at a hospital in Clinton, Md. The cause was a heart attack, said his brother, Calvin Taylor.

Mr. Taylor was born in Oxon Hill, Md., and grew up in Fort Washington, where he lived until his death. He worked for the treatment plant for 30 years until retiring in 2002. He was a member of the Elks, the Loyal Order of Moose and the American Legion.

Margaret B. Neudorfer, federal secretary

Margaret B. Neudorfer, 88, a secretary at the Department of Health and Human Services from the early 1980s to 1997, died May 27 at a hospital in Bethesda. The cause was pneumonia, said a daughter, Linda McQuiggan.

Mrs. Neudorfer, a Rockville resident, was born Margaret Boggs in Alvon, W.Va. She was a member of Rockville Presbyterian Church for more than 50 years and served as an elder and deacon. She was also a member of the Order of the Eastern Star.

M. Eugene Moyer, federal economist

M. Eugene Moyer, 79, an economist at the Department of Health and Human Services from 1970 to 1999, died May 30 at his home in Annandale, Va. The cause was lung cancer, said a daughter, Laura Moyer.

Mr. Moyer was born in Muncie, Ind., and was an assistant economics professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from 1966 to 1970. He owned Gene’s Antiques in Annandale for about 15 years until closing the business in 2010.

Paul R. Edlich, air-traffic consultant

Paul R. Edlich, 77, who retired in 2000 as president of Air & Airways Communication Services, an air-traffic consultancy he started about a decade earlier, died June 2 at a hospital in Warrenton, Va. The cause was congestive heart failure, said his wife, Katherine Kent-Edlich.

Mr. Edlich, a Warrenton resident, was born in Clifton, N.J. He was an engineer at AT&T, RCA and Lockheed before settling in the Washington area in the mid-1970s. He was marketing manager for the defense contractor Sierra Nevada before starting his own business. He was a past president of the Ivy Hill Homeowners Association in Warrenton.

Gerald D. Benfield, WMATA employee

Gerald D. Benfield, 91, who spent 39 years with what became the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority and retired in 1985 as a subway supervisor based in New Carrollton, Md., died May 25 at a hospice in Forest City, N.C. The cause was cancer, said his wife, Joan Benfield.

Mr. Benfield was born in Alexander County, N.C., and raised in Lenore, N.C. After Army combat service in Europe during World War II, he started as a streetcar and bus driver and later drove limousines operated by the D.C. transit system. His wife said that on special duty he transported members of the Kennedy family on the day of the funeral service for President John F. Kennedy. He moved to Forest City from Upper Marlboro, Md., in 2005.

Karl E. Swenson, mechanical engineer

Karl E. Swenson, 95, a mechanical engineer who was a civilian member of the team who developed the Navy’s first nuclear submarine, died May 16 at his home in Lake Ridge, Va. The cause was congestive heart failure, said a son, Robert Swenson.

Mr. Swenson, a native of Concord, N.H., worked for the Navy from 1943 to 1973 and helped design propulsion components of the USS Nautilus, the first nuclear-powered submarine. He reported directly to the commander of the Navy’s nuclear program, Adm. Hyman G. Rickover, his family said. He later worked as a consultant with MPR Associates in Washington.

Earnest R. Oney, CIA political analyst

Earnest R. Oney, 93, who spent 30 years as a CIA political analyst assigned to the Middle Eastern desk, died May 24 at a hospital in the Bronx. The cause was congestive heart failure, said a daughter, Myra Oney.

Dr. Oney was born in Wellington, Ohio, and served as an Army medic during the Normandy invasion and Battle of the Bulge. He later was a linguist and decoder in the Office of Strategic Services, the wartime forerunner of the CIA. He joined the CIA in 1950 and served two tours in Iran. He moved to Croton-on-Hudson, N.Y., from Winchester, Va., in 1999.

Richard L. Hughes, personnel management specialist

Richard L. Hughes, 80, a personnel management specialist for several government agencies, including the Coast Guard from 1980 to 1987, died May 29 at a hospital in Bethesda. The cause was cerebral vasculitis, said a stepdaughter, Aihua Zhou.

Mr. Hughes, a Bethesda resident, was born in New York. He worked for the State Department, the Navy Department and the National Guard before joining the Coast Guard. He was fluent in Japanese, Spanish, Portuguese, German, French and Swahili, his family said. He was a volunteer at Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Nicholas D. Cantwell, Air Force colonel

Nicholas D. Cantwell, 79, a retired Air Force colonel who specialized in defense systems procurement, died April 29 at a hospice in Harwood, Md. The cause was kidney failure, said his daughter, Karen Cantwell.

Col. Cantwell, an Edgewater, Md., resident, was born in Roebling, N.J., and played semi-professional baseball in the 1950s. He served as an Air Force contracting officer, including on postings in Thailand, Belgium and Germany, and received decorations including the Legion of Merit before his retirement in 1983. He later was director of contracting for Martin Marietta. His memberships included Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic Church in Edgewater.

— From staff reports