Harry N. Howard, 85, a former State Department official and a retired professor of Middle East studies at American University, died of Parkinson's disease Oct. 22 at the Carriage Hill nursing center in Bethesda.

Dr. Howard, a resident of Bethesda, was born in Excelsior Springs, Mo. After graduating from William Jewell College, he earned a doctorate in history at the University of California at Berkeley. He taught at Miami University in Ohio before he moved to Washington and joined the State Department in 1942.

At the State Department he specialized in Middle East and Eastern European affairs. From 1956 until 1962, he was based in Beirut as a representative to the advisory commission of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees. After retiring from the State Department in 1962, Dr. Howard remained in Beirut for one more year as a special assistant to the commissioner general of the U.N. agency.

He returned to Washington in 1963 and was a professor of Middle East studies at American University until retiring again in 1972.

Dr. Howard wrote numerous articles and books on European and Middle Eastern history and diplomacy. He was a member of the board of the Middle East Institute.

Survivors include his wife of 55 years, Virginia F. Brubaker Howard of Bethesda; two sons, Robert and Norman Howard, both of Reston; one brother, William Howard of Houston; one sister, Florence Parks of Overland Park, Kan., and four grandchildren.

THE REV. HOUSTON G. BROOKS,

82, the pastor emeritus of Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Rockville and a former youth director of the Northern Virginia Baptist Association, died of congestive heart failure Oct. 21 at the National Orthopaedic and Rehabilitation Hospital.

Mr. Brooks, a lifelong resident of Alexandria, attended the old Snowden School and Hampton Institute. As a young man he joined his father in a painting and interior decorating business. It was called Henry C. Brooks & Son Co.

Later, when his own children worked in the firm, Houston Brooks called it H.G. Brooks & Sons. He continued the business until about 1965.

By that time he had been a Baptist minister for more than two decades. Ordained in 1941 by the Northern Virginia Baptist Association, Mr. Brooks served churches in Remington, Gunston and Leesburg. He also headed the association's youth program, and through his work there and his pastorates he was credited with persuading about 40 people to become ministers.

In 1963, Mr. Brooks was named pastor of Mount Calvary Baptist Church, and he retired there as pastor emeritus in 1986.

Survivors include his wife, Evelyn Lemon Brooks of Alexandria; five children, Dr. Houston G. Brooks Jr. of Somerset, N.J., Dr. Henry C. Brooks of Newton Center, Mass., retired Army Maj. Gen. Leo A. Brooks and Nellie Brooks Quander, both of Alexandria, and Francis K. Brooks of Montpelier, Vt.; 13 grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren.

WILLIAM C. (NICK) CARTER JR.,

67, a retired colonel in the Army Corps of Engineers who later supervised Metro construction contracts for DeLeuw, Cather & Co., died of cancer Oct. 21 at the Hospice of Northern Virginia.

Col. Carter, a resident of Alexandria, was born in Fordyce, Ark. He attended Texas A&M University. He was commissioned in the Engineers in World War II and served in the China-Burma-India Theater.

Over the years he also served in the Korean and Vietnam wars and he was stationed in Japan, Germany and Panama as well as at various Army posts in this country. He was assigned to the Army Materiel Command in Alexandria when he retired in 1970.

His military decorations included two awards of the Legion of Merit and the Bronze Star.

A resident of this area since 1967, Col. Carter went to work for DeLeuw, Cather & Co. after leaving the Army. In addition to working on various Metro projects he supervised contracts for the Four Mile Run flood control project in Arlington and Alexandria.

Col. Carter was a member of St. Luke's Episcopal Church and a former member of the board of managers of Goodwin House, a church retirement home. He was a volunteer with the Army Retirement Residence Foundation-Potomac, which is building a retirement residence for retired Army officers and their wives.

Col. Carter's survivors include his wife, Virginia, of Alexandria; two children, Candace Childs of San Rafael, Calif., and Ray Carter of Arlington; a sister, Mary Frank of Little Rock, Ark.; a brother, Dr. James Carter of Houston; and one grandchild.

VIOLET R. CRITZER,

82, retired deputy clerk of the circuit court in Arlington, died of a pulmonary embolism Oct. 17 at Arlington Hospital.

Mrs. Critzer worked 25 years in the clerk of court's office before her retirement in 1970, and she had previously worked at the U.S. Census Bureau in Suitland.

A resident of Arlington since 1936, she was born and raised in Richmond and worked there for the Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad before moving to this area.

She was a member of the Clarendon Presbyterian Church, the Arlington Business and Professional Women's Organization, the Arlington Salvation Army Women's Auxiliary, the Arlington County Retirees' Association, and she was a charter member of the Arlington Historical Society.

In retirement, Mrs. Critzer had done volunteer work for at the National Hospital for Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation.

Her husband, James Alfrey Critzer, died in 1950.

Survivors include one son, James Alfrey Critzer of Arlington; one daughter, Jo Anne Solomon of Wheaton; one sister, Lucille Witherspoon of Hagerstown, and two grandchildren.

SHIRLEY PICKERING MUELLER,

65, a former dietitian with the Children's Hospital National Medical Center, died of pneumonia Oct. 19 at a hospital in South Pasadena, Fla.

Mrs. Mueller, who moved from the Washington area to Gulfport, Fla., in 1982, was born in Nasonville, R.I. She graduated from the University of Rhode Island. She moved to the Washington area in 1950 and joined the staff at Children's Hospital, where she worked until 1960.

Survivors include her husband, retired Army Col. Frederick H. Mueller of Gulfport; one son, Dr. Stephen G. Mueller of Boston; two daughters, Deborah R. Mueller of Falls Church and Army Lt. Janet S.M. Mathews of Fuquay-Varina, N.C.; one brother, Wilson Pickering Jr. of North Providence, R.I., and two sisters, Gertrude Blackinton of Riverside, R.I., and Verna Hall of East Providence, R.I.

ELLA MAE SWINSON JOYNER-KNIGHT,

70, an independent Washington real estate broker and travel agent who also was a gospel singer, died Oct. 16 at Malcolm Grow Medical Center at Andrews Air Force Base after several strokes.

Mrs. Joyner-Knight was born in Goldsboro, N.C., and she had lived in Washington since 1940.

As a gospel singer she sang at churches in this area and around the country. She was a member of the Bible Way Church in Washington, where she had organized the Live Wire Singers, and she had been president of the Bible Way Radio Choir and the Willing Workers Club.

Mrs. Joyner-Knight attended Armstrong Vocational High School in Washington and had operated an independent real estate and travel business here since 1948.

Her first husband, Rufus Joyner, died in 1972.

Survivors include her husband, Jesse Knight of Washington; one son, Arlandus Swinson of Washington; 12 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.

JOSEPH P. PARLON JR.,

55, a retired special agent with the Drug Enforcement Administration, died of a liver ailment Oct. 22 at Suburban Hospital. He lived in Rockville.

Mr. Parlon, a Washington native, graduated from Dematha High School and Michigan State University. He served in the Marine Corps in Korea during the war there. He completed his education after the war and joined a predecessor organization of the DEA in 1959.

He was the supervisor of President Reagan's Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force for the mid-Atlantic states when he retired in 1986.

Mr. Parlon had coached football for the Wheaton Boys and Girls Club and the athletic association at St. Jude's Catholic Church in Rockville, where he was a member.

He was a member of the Fraternal Order of Police, the International Association of Chiefs of Police, and the Association of Former Federal Narcotics Agents.

Survivors include his wife, Patricia Parlon of Rockville; two sons, Michael E., of Silver Spring and Thomas J., of Rockville; two daughters, Janis P. Parlon of Silver Spring and Denise Miller of Germantown; his parents, Mary N. and Joseph P. Parlon Sr. of Kensington; a brother, Ralph E. Parlon of Odenton, Md., and two grandchildren.

JACOB SOKOL,

89, retired controller of the District Grocery Stores cooperative, died of cardiopulmonary arrest Oct. 19 at the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington in Rockville.

Mr. Sokol was born in New York City and moved to Washington with his family in 1905. He was a graduate of the old Business High School here and earned a degree in accounting at Benjamin Franklin University.

Before World War II he was an accountant and office manager with the Mason, Fenwick and Lawrence patent trademark law firm in Washington.

Mr. Sokol served in the Army during the war, then became controller of District Grocery Stores, a chain of cooperative grocery stores. He retired when the chain disbanded in the late 1970s.

An opera and music lover, during the late 1930s he sang regularly on his own radio show. He was a member of Argo Lodge of B'nai B'rith and Washington Hebrew Congregation. He also had served on the board of directors of the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington, where he had lived since suffering a stroke 5 1/2 years ago.

Mr. Sokol's wife, the former Anna Wolf Jacobs, died in 1976.

Survivors include one stepson, Dr. Irwin Jacobs of Miami, and three sisters, Celia S. Marmelstein of Silver Spring, Rose Sokol of Washington and Hilda S. Stearman of Rockville.

FLORENCE (WENDY) NESS,

76, the owner of Carlwen Kennels in Potomac and a breeder, exhibitor and judge of purebred dogs, died Oct. 22 at Sibley Memorial Hospital of complications following a stroke suffered in May of 1987.

Mrs. Ness, a resident of Potomac, was born in Crookston, Minn. She first came to the Washington area in 1943.

She began breeding and showing boxers in 1954. In 1962 one of her boxers, Carlwen's Commander in Chief, was acquired by President John F. Kennedy.

In 1987 Mrs. Ness was made an honorary member of the Potomac Boxer Club. She was only the third member of the club to be so honored in its 50-year history.

Survivors include her husband, Carl Ness of Potomac.

SAMUEL PAUL HAINES,

79, the founder and president of the Washington Information and Investigating Council, a lobbying and investigation firm, died of heart ailments Oct. 20 at Georgetown University Hospital.

Mr. Haines, a resident of Silver Spring, was born in Warsaw, Ind. As a young man he was a deputy sheriff and deputy U.S. marshal in Indiana. He earned a law degree from LaSalle University in Chicago.

In 1937, he moved to Washington and established the Washington Information and Investigating Council, which is now located in Silver Spring. It served as a manufacturers' representative, assisting companies in dealings with the federal government, including contract matters. Mr. Haines also was a private investigator, and his clients included the government as well as private persons and organizations.

Mr. Haines was a Mason and a Shriner.

His wife, Dorothy Haines, died in 1974. Survivors include one daughter, Barbara Ann Moore of Fremont, Ind.; four grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren.

RICHARD LYNN PARLI,

78, a real estate appraiser and architect in Northern Virginia for more than 40 years, died of cancer Oct. 21 at his home in Arlington.

Mr. Parli was born in Pawnee City, Neb. He earned a degree in architecture from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. During World War II, he served in the Army in North Africa and was promoted to major.

He moved to the Washington area in 1946 and became an independent real estate appraiser and architect. He maintained his practice until his death.

Mr. Parli served on the boards of the American Institute of Architects and the Little Falls Presbyterian Church. He was a member of the American Institute of Real Estate Appraisers, the Arlington County Planning Commission and the National Capital Regional Planning Council.

He also was a Mason and a member of the Kiwanis Club, the Elks Club and the Washington Golf and Country Club. His hobbies included water coloring and gardening.

Survivors include his wife, Virginia Parli of Arlington; a daughter, Lynn Modecki of Arlington; a son, Richard Lanier Parli of Amissvile, Va., and four grandchildren.