L. Perry West, a retired president and chairman of the board of the West Brothers Brick Co. Inc., died at Georgetown University Hospital on Sunday of head injuries sustained Friday in a fall at his home in Washington. He was 101 years old.
Mr. West was born in Washington and attended old Business High School. In 1902, he joined the brick firm, which had been founded by his grandfather in 1844. He became president in 1926 and continued to head it untl 1971, when he retired. The firm's production facilities were sold to a group of employes at that time.
For many years, the company was located on what are now access roads to the Pentagon. The property was condemned by the government to make way for the Pentagon in World War II and Mr. West relocated it in Fairmont Heights.
Bricks from the West company were used in the White House, the Pentagon, the U.S. Supreme Court bulding, the Capitol and other notable buildings.
When he retired, Mr. West told an interviewer that "figuring out what to do now is a lot harder than making brick."
In 1979, Mr. West was one of a group of centenarians who appeared before Rep. Claude Pepper's House Select Committee on Aging. The Florida Democrat wanted to find out about longevity.
Mr. West said he had done calisthenics and deep breathing exercises until he was into his 90s. He also said he had smoked the only cigarette of his life "between 4 and 4 1/2, when my older sister offered it as a bribe to give up my kilts."
He also skated on the Potomac in his younger days, bicycled from downtown Washington to Frederick Md., and back in one day, a distance of 96 miles, and rode horseback until he was 65.He was a treasurer of the old Riding and Hunt Club of Washington and for several years was treasurer of the National Capitol Horse Show.
In addition to running the family business, Mr. West was a director of the American Security & Trust Co., the Jefferson Federal Savings and Loan Asociation, and several other businesses. He was a member of the Board of Trade.
He also was a trustee of the Chruch of the Covenant, a predecessor of the National Presbyterian Church. He was a member of the University Club, the Columbia Historical Society and the Society of Oldest Inhabitants.
His wife, the former Elizabeth T. Galliher, died in 1960.
Survivors include three daughters, Helen West Ratigan of White Bear Lake, Minn., and Ruth A. West and Mary Elizabeth West Lyle, both of Washington; five grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.