James Henderson Straubel, 75, retired director of the Air Force Association and founding editor of its publication, Air Force Magazine, died Dec. 15 of congestive heart failure at his home in Fairfax Station.

Mr. Straubel headed the association, a 200,000-member organization, for 32 years before retiring in 1980. He devised programs to promote the importance of aerospace technology through the magazine and its affiliate, the Aerospace Education Foundation.

He came here in 1940 to be managing editor of American Aviation magazine. He was a native of Green Bay, Wis., and a graduate of Lawrence University. His early jobs were writing for the Appleton (Wis.) Post Crescent, the Green Bay Press Gazette and the Milwaukee Journal.

He was called to active duty at the outbreak of World War II by the Army Air Forces and assigned the job in New York City of creating an official service publication, the Air Forces Journal. He was awarded the Legion of Merit and retired from active duty as a colonel in 1946.

He spent a year with the Avon publishing house in New York, then became editor of Air Force Magazine, which the Air Force had turned over to the newly established Air Force Association.

He was appointed executive director of the association in 1948. At the time, it had 56,000 members. Mr. Straubel was instrumental in the adaptation of Air Force technical courses for civilian schools.

After his retirement, he wrote a book about the association, "Crusade for Airpower." He twice received the Air Force's exceptional service award and won awards for promotion of aviation.

Survivors include his wife, Arlene Hanon Straubel of Fairfax Station; three daughters, Gay Fuerst of Cartharpin, Va., Jean Karnegay of Fairfax and Judy Schuler of Fairfax Station; and four grandchildren.


D.C. Head of Consumers Group

Charles E. Hill, 49, a lawyer who had been head of the Washington office of the National Consumer Law Center since 1979, died of multiple myeloma Dec. 16 at his home in Washington.

Before joining the consumer law organization, he had been associate director of the Georgetown University Law Center's Institute for Public Representation. He also had been an associate in the law firm of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering.

Mr. Hill, who came here in the late 1960s, was a native of Pittsburgh. He was a 1963 honors graduate of Duke University and a 1966 honors graduate of Harvard University Law School.

He spent two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Ethiopia. He also had done volunteer civil rights work in Mississippi and worked with the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights.

He was an authority on government programs to assist the poor in paying their home heating bills. He was the recipient of an award from the National Legal Aid and Defender Association.

Survivors include his wife, Patricia Donovan, and two children, Matthew and Katherine, all of Washington; his mother, Barbara Hill of Pittsburgh; a brother, E. Alexander Hill of Milwaukee; and a sister, Dorothy Vogel of Philadelphia.


Army Colonel

Paul D. Troxler, 85, a retired Army colonel who had lived in the Washington area since the early 1970s, died of cancer Dec. 16 at his home in Alexandria.

Col. Troxler served in the Army and its Corps of Engineers from 1941 until retiring in 1960. He served in the Persian Gulf Command and the Philippines during World War II. After the war, he was stationed in Japan and helped repair railroads and ports in Greece under the Point Four program.

He served as district engineer in the Middle East and directed construction work on the Dhahran air base in Saudi Arabia. He also directed construction work at the giant Wheelus air base in Libya. His last assignment was as district engineer in Jacksonville, Fla.

After retiring from the Army, he spent 11 years working for an American concern in Pakistan, where he participated in the Indus River Basin reclamation project.

Col. Troxler was a native of Richmond and a graduate of Virginia Military Institute. From 1928 to 1938, he worked abroad. A civil engineer, he helped build a railroad in Iran that he was to work on again during his wartime service.

He had served on the vestry of Christ Episcopal Church in Alexandria and was a fellow of the American Society of Civil Engineers. He was a 32nd-degree Mason.

Survivors include his wife, the former Leonora Drewry, whom he married in 1929 and who lives in Alexandria; two sons, Robert, of London, and Drewry, of Alexandria; a daughter, Anne Hoover, of Alexandria; a brother, Floyd, of Richmond; six grandchildren; and a great-granddaughter.


Labor Economist

Thomas T. Thalley, 72, a retired Labor Department labor economist who was active in volunteer groups, died of a heart ailment Dec. 14 at Washington Hospital Center. He lived in Washington.

Mr. Thalley began his civilian government career with the Air Force in 1951. He became a senior cartographer there before transferring to the Labor Department in 1963. He was the recipient of government commendations and of sustained superior service awards before retiring in 1977.

He was a life member of the D.C. Congress of Parents and Teachers and had tutored kindergarten children at the Fort Lincoln Community School. He had been chairman of the legislative committee of Chapter 2414 of the American Association of Retired Persons. He also was a member of the Toastmasters Club and had been active in cultural and community groups.

Mr. Thalley was born in Marion, N.C., and came here as a teenager to attend high school. He graduated from Dunbar High in 1936 and attended the Stillman Institute in Alabama and Johnson C. Smith College in North Carolina. He received a degree in economics from Howard University in 1948.

He served in the Army in the Pacific during World War II.

Survivors include his wife, the former Melba Thompson, whom he married in 1951 and who lives in Washington; two daughters, Cecile Thalley of Evanston, Ill., and Laura Thalley of Washington; three brothers; and a sister.