Helen Billie Isaac
Educator and Office Worker
Helen Billie Isaac, 61, a former educator and office worker, died of cardiac arrest Feb. 18 at Greater Southeast Community Hospital. She had Alzheimer's disease.
Ms. Isaac was a resident of Washington, where she was born. She graduated from Dunbar High School and from what now is the University of Maryland -- Eastern Shore.
She received a master's degree in education at Howard University.
In 1964 and 1965, she was an assistant to Rep. Adam Clayton Powell (D-N.Y.) Beginning in 1964, she also was a teacher and counselor at Roosevelt High School and Evans Junior High School in Washington and St. Mary's College of Maryland.
From 1977 until she retired on disability in 1986, she was a front office and registration assistant at the Washington Hospital Center and the Washington Hilton.
She was a member of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority and St. Peter's and St. Mary's Catholic churches in Washington.
Her marriages to James Williams Sr., Melvin Prillaman, Leon Copeland and Harold Taylor ended in divorce.
Survivors include two children from her first marriage, James Williams Jr. of Glenn Dale and Helen Holmes of Front Royal, Va.; a son from her second marriage, Vance Prillaman of Fort Washington; a daughter from her fourth marriage, Helen Bobbie-Jean Taylor of Washington; her mother, Daisy Isaac of Washington; and five grandchildren.
John J. Meehan
Defense Security Official
John J. Meehan, 78, who had worked at the Defense Department since the mid-1940s and retired in 1987 as deputy director of its industrial security program, died Feb. 20 at Inova Fairfax Hospital of complications of pneumonia. He lived in Fairfax.
Mr. Meehan was born in New York City and graduated from Fordham University in 1957.
During World War II, he joined the Army Air Forces and served in the China-Burma-India theater. His awards include the Bronze Star and the Purple Heart.
His memberships include St. Leo's Catholic Church in Fairfax, the Knights of Columbus and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.
He was a past board member of the Fairfax Police Youth Club.
Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Margaret Mary Meehan of Fairfax; a son, Martin P. Meehan of Falls Church; a daughter, Eileen M. Lunsford of Sterling; three sisters; and two grandchildren.
Maurita Gordon Harley
Medical Records Chief, Pianist
Maurita Gordon Harley, 81, a retired D.C. General Hospital chief of medical records who in the 1940s and 1950s was a jazz singer and pianist, died of congestive heart failure Feb. 17 at Doctors Community Hospital in Lanham.
During her years in show business, Mrs. Harley was the opening act for well-known entertainers such as Pearl Bailey, Sarah Vaughn and Sid Caesar.
Mrs. Harley lived in Washington, where she regularly performed at the Blue Mirror, the Merryland Club and the Brown Derby.
She also performed in New York City and was featured in a short-lived NBC television program called "Tempo." When her husband, Robert T. Harley, died in 1956, she ended her musical career and took a job at D.C. General Hospital. She retired in 1987 after 29 years.
Mrs. Harley, a Lanham resident, was born in Wilmington, Del., and was a business administration graduate of Howard University.
She was past choir director of Fifteenth Presbyterian Church in Washington.
Survivors include three children, Maurita Bostic of Lanham, Art Harley of Riverdale and Harvey Harley of Lanham; seven grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.
Thale Gunneng Fleisher
Thale Gunneng Fleisher, 59, a former Norwegian Foreign Service linguist who also worked for the Central Intelligence Agency, died of lung cancer Feb. 13 at her home in Bethesda.
Mrs. Fleisher, who had lived in the Washington area since 1974, retired early last year after about 20 years as a Latin American analyst in the CIA's Foreign Broadcast Information Service.
Earlier, she served in the Norwegian Foreign Service as a linguist in Bern, Switzerland, and at the United Nations
Born in Oslo, she grew up there and in Warsaw, Paris, Stockholm, Ottawa and Washington, where her father was Norwegian ambassador.
She graduated from the University of Stockholm and took graduate courses in linguistics at American University.
Survivors include her husband, Eric W. Fleisher, and their son, Arne E. Fleisher, both of Bethesda; two stepchildren, Emily S. Fleisher of Surry, Maine, and Eric T. Fleisher of New York City; and two sisters.
Mary Veronica Connor
Retail Credit Manager
Mary Veronica Connor, 87, a native Washingtonian who worked for the old Sears store on Wisconsin Avenue for about 25 years before retiring in 1977 as a retail credit manager, died of pulmonary fibrosis Feb. 18 at Sibley Memorial Hospital.
Mrs. Connor lived in Washington, where she was an active member of St. Ann's Catholic Church in Washington and the Legionnaires of Christ Guild.
Her husband, Francis J. Connor, died in 1957.
Survivors include three sons, Francis J. Connor Jr. of Jacksonville, Fla., John L. "Jack" Connor of Bethesda and Stephen A. Connor of Hyattsville; six daughters, Sister Carol Connor of Hyattsville, Mary Ries of College Park, Veronica "Bonnie" Connor of Washington, Sister Margaret Connor of Baltimore, Rita Jakub of University Park and Therese "Tess" Bredice of Germantown; a brother; 15 grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.
Raymond F. Leibelson
Structural Steel Estimator
Raymond F. Leibelson, 84, a former Silver Spring resident who was a self-employed estimator of structural steel for large construction projects, died Feb. 21 at a hospital in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., after a heart attack.
Mr. Leibelson, a native of New York City, came to Washington while serving in the Army during World War II.
He began his career after the war, working mainly as an independent contractor.
He moved to Fort Lauderdale in 1973 and retired in 1980, though he remained active as a consultant until his death.
His marriages to Ruth Leibelson and Sylvia Leibelson ended in divorce.
Survivors include two children from his first marriage, Michael Leibelson of Washington and Linda Artz of Gaithersburg; and three grandchildren.
Katharine Low Hembree
Katharine Low Hembree, 81, the director of religious education at Hughes United Methodist Church in Wheaton from 1969 to 1974, died of cancer Feb. 22 at her home in Gaithersburg.
Mrs. Hembree also was a past president of United Methodist Women at St. Paul's United Methodist Church in Kensington.
From the late 1950s to the late 1970s, she was an officer with United Methodist Women at the district and conference levels in the Baltimore-Washington area.
She was born in Tarkio, Mo., and graduated from Oklahoma City University.
In 1969, Mrs. Hembree received a master's degree in religious education from Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington.
She volunteered at the Montgomery Avenue Women's Center in Rockville and was an English tutor at the Literacy Council of Montgomery County.
At the time of her death, she was a member of Faith United Methodist Church in Rockville.
Her husband of 42 years, Howard Hembree, died in 1984.
Survivors include a son, Gilbert Hembree of Grand Blanc, Mich; a daughter, Laura Hembree of New York City; a brother; and a granddaughter. A daughter, Barbara Hembree, died in 1989.