Betty V. Strickler, 59, chief of the travel services office of the Smithsonian Institution, died Wednesday after a heart attack suffered while she was on vacation in Roanoke Rapids, N.C.

She had been chief of the travel office, which coordinates travel arrangements for Smithsonia staff members and scientists, since September, 1966.

Mrs. tricler began work as a secretary in the Commerce Department in 1941, later working for the Office of Education in 1942.

During the early 1950s she was a voucher examiner in the accounting departments of the Public Housing Administration, the Small Business Administration and the Foreign Operations Administration.

From 1956, to 1966, she was chief of travel service for the National Science Foundation.

Born in Escanaba, Mich., she was a graduate of Central High School and Wilson Teachers College here.

Mrs. Strickler was a member of the Chevy Chase Presbyterian Church, and taught Sunday School there for many years.

She was a former president of the Cevy Chase Junior Women's club and a volunteer at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda.

She is survived by her husband, Betton W., of the home in Bethesda; a sister, Janet V. Inches, of Chevy Chase, and a brother, Myron A. Verville, of Fairfax.