Dr. Hezekiah L. Ashley, 86, who practiced obstetrics and gynecology in Washington for 50 years before his retirement in 1978, died Tuesday at his home here. He had a heart ailment.
Dr. Ashley was born in Manchester, Jamaica, British West Indies. He served in Europe in the British West Indian Regiment during World War I.
He first came to Washington in 1919 and enrolled in Howard University as a premedical student. He earned a medical degree at Meharry Medical College in Nashville, and then returned here to intern at the old Freedmen's Hospital, now Howard University Hospital.
Dr. Ashley established a private practice. He also was assistant gynecologist on the staff of Freedmen's for more than 20 years.
During World War II, he examined draftees for local selective service boards. He received four certificates of appreciation from President Franklin D. Roosevelt and the Selective Service Medal from Congress for this work.
Dr. Ashley was a member of the American and National medical associations, the Medico-Chirurgical Society, Lambda chapter of the Chi Delta Mu medical fraternity, and the Pasteur Medical Reading Club.
A member of People's Congregational Church in Washington, he served on its board of trustees for 12 years. He was a founder of the church's Keystone Circle.
Dr. Ashley's wife, Nettie, died in 1977. He leaves no immediate survivors.