An obituary in Monday's editions of The Washington Post about Richard L. Plowden, 75, who died July 9 at Hadley Memorial Hospital in Washington, failed to include the casue of his death. Mr. Plowden died of a heart attack.
Richard Lee Plowden, 75, one of the youngest race drivers and pilots in the country in his early teens, died July 9 in Hadley Memorial Hospital in Washington after a brief illness.
He was the son of the late Richard Elbert and Lucille Whittle Plowden and was a native of Atlanta, where he lived most of his early years, later moving to Columbia, S.C.
He moved to Fort Washington, Md., in 1976, following his retirement, and lived for two years with his son, Lee Plowden Jr., before moving to the McGuire House in Oxon Hill.
He was one of the first certified private pilots in the country, obtaining his license -- No. 63 -- when his was 16. He was a flight instructor and stunt pilot for a brief time at Beeler Blevens Field in Hopewell, Ga., site of the present Atlanta Airport.
Mr. Plowden joined the U.S. Navy as a radio technician when he was 17, after graduating from the Atlanta School of Technology. He sailed on a destroyer to China and up the Yangtze River in the early 1920s, following the Washington Conference, when the U.S. Joined European nations in attempting to limit Japan's growing influence in China.
Shortly after his return from China, he joined Adm. Richard E. Byrd on the U.S. Navy-MacMillan polar expedition to Greenland in 1925, serving as a radio technician.
After his discharge from the Navy, Mr. Plowden worked with his father in the lumber business in Georgia and South Carolina, later becoming a partner with his brother, Guy A. Plowden, in the Plowden & Roberts Construction Co. in Columbia, S.C.
He remained with that company until World War II, during which he worked for the government at the Oak Ridge, Tenn., atomic energy plant.
Following the war, he again joined his brother in forming the Plowden Steel Co. in Columbia. They continued this operation until 1957, when he formed the Ilex Co., with E. L. Roberts.
In addition to his son and brother, he is survived by his wife, Dale, of Decatur, Ga.; two daughters, Nancy Lee Oxford of Atlanta, and Lilla Dale Maxwell of Decatur; a sister, Martha Plowden Neese of West Columbia, S.C., and seven grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers and other expressions of sympathy, the family requests the donations be made to the Episcopal bishop of the Upper Diocese of South Carolina to establish a memorial in the All Saints Episcopal Church in Pawleys Island, S.C.