Fred V. Grau, 88, an agronomist who was an authority on turf grasses and a consultant to various golf courses and similar enterprises, died of congestive heart failure Dec. 1 at Prince George's Hospital Center in Cheverly.

Dr. Grau, who lived in College Park, was a developer of crownvetch, a turf used on roadsides, and he was the founder and past president of Grasslyn Inc. of State College, Pa., which grows a variety of crownvetch.

While an official at the Department of Agriculture's Beltsville Agricultural Research Station from 1945 to 1951, he helped release both crownvetch and Meyer zoysia, a turf used on athletic fields and golf courses. Releasing is the process by which the Department of Agriculture certifies the establishment of a new variety of plant.

From 1951 until his death, Dr. Grau was a consultant to golf courses and other facilities that need turf and to such businesses as West Point Products, a turf grass machinery company.

Dr. Grau was a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Society of Agronomy. He was a member of the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, which twice gave him its Distinguished Service Award, the National Sports Turf Council and the Council of Agricultural Science and Technology. He was a founding member of the Musser Turf Grass Foundation and the Pennsylvania Turf Grass Council, which conferred on him its Distinguished Service Award.

Dr. Grau was born in Bennington, Neb. He graduated from the University of Nebraska and received master's and doctoral degrees in agronomy at the University of Maryland. From 1935 until he joined the staff of the Beltsville facility in 1945, he was an agricultural extension agent at what was then Pennsylvania State College in State College, Pa.

He received the University of Nebraska's alumni achievement award.

His first wife, the former Anne Bourne Fagan, died in 1968. His second wife, Frances Holyoke McCoy, died in 1976. Survivors include two children by his first marriage, Ellen Mentzer of Silver Spring and Fred V. Grau Jr. of State College; a sister, Edith Reynolds of Pensacola, Fla.; and six grandchildren.



Frank G. Hickerson, 65, a retired National Institutes of Health architect who was a founder of the Montgomery County-Pioneer Beep Softball League for the Blind, died Dec. 1 at his home in Beltsville after a heart attack.

He and his wife, Agnes, founded the Softball League in 1977. In Montgomery County, the game was played by placing a ball, which emitted a sound, on a special tee. After hitting the ball, the batter ran to bases that emitted beeping sounds.

Beep softball was developed in the 1970s by people who worked for Bell Telephone companies and belonged to the Telephone Pioneers of America. Mrs. Hickerson, a former switchboard operator and supervisor, belonged to the Pioneers. She died in 1988.

Mr. Hickerson was a native of New York City and a Navy veteran of World War II. He moved here in 1958 and graduated from the University of Maryland. He worked for NIH for 25 years before retiring in 1987.

Mr. Hickerson was the recipient of numerous community service awards and a 1982 Maryland Governor's Citation. He was a past president of the Montgomery County Baseball Association and had been active in the Calverton Recreation Council in Beltsville. He also had played Uncle Sam for a decade in the Calverton Fourth of July parade.



George J. Kandra, 71, a retired salesman for Crown Supply, a restaurant and institutional equipment firm, died of congestive heart failure Nov. 26 at Montgomery General Hospital.

Mr. Kandra, who lived in Silver Spring, was born in Taylor, Pa. He graduated from LaSalle College. He moved to Washington shortly before World War II and taught at St. John's College High School as a member of the Christian Brothers Order.

During World War II, he left the order to serve in the Army in Europe.

After the war, Mr. Kandra returned to Washington and taught at the Landon School for three years before becoming a salesman. He worked for Wyandotte Chemicals and other organizations before joining Crown Supply. He worked for the company for 16 years before retiring in 1984.

Survivors include his wife, Claire Kandra of Silver Spring; and two children, Karen Wenzel of Woodbine, N.J., and Gregory Kandra of Astoria, N.Y.


Freelance Photographer

Julia Anderson King, 74, a freelance photographer from 1946 to the early 1960s, died of a brain tumor Dec. 3 at Annapolis Medical Center. She lived in Cloverlea, Md.

Mrs. King was a news photographer who took pictures of political figures, television celebrities and others. Her photographs from Washington frequently appeared in Broadcasting magazine.

She was a native of Winston-Salem, N.C. From 1936 to 1946, she was a photographer for the Winston-Salem Journal and Sentinel and the Harrisburg (Pa.) Patriot and Evening News. She moved to Washington in 1946, when she married Arthur E. King, former managing editor of Broadcasting magazine.

They lived in New York from 1955 to 1960, then moved to Bethesda. Cloverlea had been their principal residence since 1970.

Mrs. King belonged to the Homemakers Club, Cassos of Anne Arundel County and Mayo Memorial United Methodist Church in Edgewater.

In addition to her husband, of Cloverlea, survivors include a brother, Bynum W. Anderson of Lumberton, N.C.


Area Resident

Anne M. Doetsch, 96, an area resident for the last seven years, died Nov. 24 at Greenbelt Nursing Center. She had Alzheimer's disease.

Mrs. Doetsch, who lived in Greenbelt, was a native of Chicago. She lived in Indiana and New Jersey before moving here.

Her husband, Roman J. Doetsch, died in 1981. Survivors include a son, Raymond M., of Beltsville; a daughter, Elinor King of Springfield, N.J.; five grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.