Chester Lee Jones, 57, a longtime Washington resident who was active in church singing groups, died of cardio-respiratory failure Friday at the Veterans Administration Hospital.

Mr. Jones, who was born and reared in Bethel, N.C., was a member of the men's chorus and second choir at Galbraith AME Zion Church in Washington.

After World War II service in the Navy in the Pacific, he moved to Washington. He worked for the Long Fence Company in Fairfax for about 18 years and later for other building contractors. In 1979, he joined Dick Steven's Chevrolet in Wheaton and worked there for about a year until he retired for reasons of health.

Mr. Jones was a member of the American Legion.

Survivors include his wife, Earline H., of Washington; a daughter, Delois Moody of Plainfield, N.J., two stepdaughters, Angelyn Winestock of District Heights and Louise T. Boone of Washington; his mother, Johnnie Mae Jones of Bethel; five sisters, Evelyn Knight and Rosa Grimes, both of Bethel, Mildred Weaver of Washington, Dorothy Spearman of Germantown, Md., and Mary Frances Blackwell of Brooklyn; three brothers, Curtis and Barry, both of Washington, and Louis, of Bethel; nine grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.