Retired Army Lt. Col. Donn H. Wagner, 62, a career military officer and then a civilian employee of the Army, died Wednesday at his home in Kensington after a long illness.

His last military assignment was with the Army Topographic Command, known as the Army Map Service, before his retirement in 1964.

Col. Wagner then continued to work as a civilian in the Map Service. At the time of his second retirement in 1971, he was a key member of the directorate of operations.

Born in Monroe, Mich., he entered the Army in 1942 and was commissioned after attending the Engineer Office Candidate School at Ft. Belvoir.

In the latter years of World War II, he was stationed in the Marianas and the Palau Islands in the Pacific.

After the war, Col. Wagner left military service briefly, then returned to the Army in 1948. He attended the Engineer School at Ft. Belvoir and the Army Language School in Monterey, Calif.

During the Korean conflict, he was assigned to the Far East Command, Tokyo, where he played an important role in organizing the South Military Intelligence Service Group Military Intelligence Service Group in Japan and the Far East Intelligence School in Korea. He was awarded the Bronze Star.

Col. Wagner was chief of operations. Army Special Security Detachment, in Naples, Italy, before his final assignment to the Army Map Service here.

He is survived by his wife, Helen M. Wagner, and a son, Donn H. (Hank) Jr., of the home, and a sister, Jane Canwood, of Fort Pierce, Fla.

The family suggests that expressions of sympathy be in the form of contributions to the Washington Hearing Society.