William A. Stringfellow, 72 a retired Washington lawyer and insurance association executive, died of a heart attack June 11 while swimming at the home of a neighbor at Johns Island, S.C.

A former resident of Bethesda, Mr. Stringfellow moved to Johns Island after retiring last year.

He began his insurance career in 1941 as a claims representative with the U.S. Casualty Company and later managed the company's Charleston, S.C. office. He also worked as a casualty manager for a firm of managing general agents and headed two southern field offices for an insurance underwriting firm.

In 1957, after serving as executive secretary of the North Carolina Association of Mutual Insurance Agents for the three years, he came to the Washington area as assistant general manager of the National Association of Mutual Insurance Agents (NAMIA). He served as its general manager for 14 years before retiring in 1974.

Mr. Stringfellow then established a private law practice here, specializing in international law. In addition, he was executive vice president and secretary-treasurer of the American Association of Managing General Agents. In 1975, he was a consultant on education for NAMIA.

A native of Louisville, Ky., he later moved with his family to Asheville, N.C. He earned a law degree from the University of North Caroline in 1932 and practiced law in Asheville before beginning his insurance career.

Mr. Stringfellow was managing editor of Mutual Review and contributed articles to other industry publication, including The National Underwriter. He was a member of the American Society of Association Executives, the Society of Chartered Property and Casualty Underwriters and state bar associations.

He was formerly active in St. John's Episcopal Church in Bethesda and in United Fund campaigns.

Survivors include his wife, the former Elizabeth Hamilton, of Johns Island, and a daughter, Laura Andell of Tarrytown, N.Y.