Dee Marlow Boyer, 25, a writer and film maker whose most recent work was about a group of Americans who traveled to the Soviet Union to promote better relations between the two peoples, died of cancer April 13 at his home in Bethesda.
Mr. Boyer had produced audiovisual shows since 1977. His most recent work was called "People to People." It is a 30-minute photographic and musical production -- plus commentary -- that tells of the experiences of 31 Seattle citizens who traveled on a nongovernmental good will mission to four cities in the Soviet Union.
As the photographer for the trip, Mr. Boyer caught on film the bonds of friendship between American and Soviet citizens. In March, "People to People" was shown at the National Geographic Society, where his father is a writer on the National Geographic Magazine, and at a peace studies class at American University.
At AU, Mr. Boyer used the occasion to talk to the 100 students who attended the presentation about his personal efforts to seek inner peace in what he knew were the last days of his life.
Mr. Boyer told the students stories that were both poignant and wry. He described participating in "a truly guinea pig-like way in a 'phase one study' of a new drug that has only recently been introduced to human populations.
"It has never been administered to patients with Ewing's sarcoma the cancer that afflicted him . The tests they are performing have more to do with documenting the various levels of toxicity and the side effects that can be caused by the drug than they are with the actual treatment of the disease.
"As one doctor put it, 'There are significant benefits to be gained by your participating in the study -- it's just that the benefits will not necessarily accrue to you personally.' Fair enough. It beats sitting on my ass and watching the grass grow."
Mr. Boyer was born in Washington. He grew up in Bethesda and graduated from Walter Johnson High School in 1977. His first audiovisual production, "Hello . . . Goodbye," was shown to an audience of 4,000 at the graduation ceremonies. In 1984, Mr. Boyer completed the course work for a bachelor's degree in the honors program at the University of Washington.
Survivors include his parents, David and Sharon Boyer, two sisters, Michelle Boyer and DeeAnne Peete, and a grandmother, Irene Crook, all of Bethesda.