Dr. G. Etzel Pearcy, 75, a retired foreign service officer who was the State Department's geographer from 1957 to 1969, died of cancer June 28 in his home in San Francisco.
As director of the State Department's Office of the Geographer, Dr. Pearcy served on government committees and study groups dealing with maritime jurisdiction, the law of the sea and the codification of geographic names.
He was chairman of the United States Board on Geographic Names from 1965 until retiring from the government in 1969 he also had participated in United Nations conferences on the laws of the sea and the standardization of geographic names.
After retiring to California in 1969, he spent three years as chairman of the geography department at California State College in Los Angeles.
He was chairman of the United States Board on Geographic Names and of several scientific texts. He edited more than 45 works on political geography.
Dr. Pearcy was a member of the Association of American Geographers, and had served as chairman of the organization's Middle Atlantic Region. He was a fellow of the Royal Geographic Society.
Dr. Pearcy was a native of Greencastle, Ind., and was a graduate of the University of California at Los Angeles. He earned master's and doctoral degrees in geography at Clark University in Worcester, Mass.
He taught at the universities of Pennsylvania, Alabama and Missouri, then worked seven years for Tans World Airlines before joining the Foreign Service in 1950. His foreign assignments included postings to Bangkok, New Delhi, London, and Paris.
He is survived by his wife, Florence E., of San Francisco.