Warren Thomas Rountree


Warren Thomas Rountree, 77, a Marine Corps veteran of World War II who also participated in combat during the Korean War, died of lung cancer May 27 at Woodbine Nursing Center in Alexandria.

A resident of Alexandria, he was born in Bowling Green, Ky., and joined the Marine Corps in 1940. During World War II, he served in combat in Guadalcanal, Tarawa, Saipan and Tinian in the South Pacific. In the Korean War, he participated in landings at Inchon and in the retreat from the Chosin Reservoir in November and December 1950.

Later, he was Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps instructor at Brown University, where an annual award for a member of the rifle and pistol team was named in his honor. He also attended George Washington University.

In 1964, he retired from the Marine Corps as a first lieutenant. Earlier in his career, he was a master gunnery sergeant. His decorations included a Purple Heart. On his military retirement, he settled in the Washington area.

From the mid-1960s to the mid-1970s, he was a senior road reporter for AAA. He worked on maps of the Western United States and Mexico.

He was a golfer and member of Andrews Air Force Base Golf Club, where he made a hole-in-one Oct. 13, 1997.

Survivors include three sisters, Faye White of Louisiana, Floy Childress and Ovva Lee Morris, both of Kentucky; and one brother, Donald Rountree of Kentucky.

W. John Child

Agricultural Diplomat

W. John Child, 50, the agricultural minister-counselor at the American Embassy in Tokyo, died May 25 at home in Fairfax. Police said his death was a suicide by hanging.

Mr. Child joined the Foreign Agricultural Service in 1972, and he had served three tours in Japan, beginning as an assistant agricultural attache in 1976. From 1982 to 1986, he was agricultural officer there, and he had been career minister since 1995. He spoke Japanese fluently.

He was born in Wahiawa, Hawaii, and graduated from the University of Maryland.

He joined the Foreign Agricultural Service as an economist in the planning and evaluation division. He later worked in the fruits and vegetables division.

His overseas posts included a tour as agricultural attache in Santiago, Chile, from 1986 to 1988 and as agricultural minister-counselor in Seoul, South Korea, from 1993 to 1995.

In Washington, his positions included serving as international economist with the Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe division and director of the Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe division of the international trade policy program area.

Survivors include his wife Sandy, of Fairfax; four children, Christopher, of Boston, Erik, of Annapolis, and Anna and Kathryn, both of Fairfax; his parents, Harold and Patricia Child of Honolulu; and a sister.

William R. Bush Jr.

Business Executive

William Reaves Bush Jr., 78, who retired in 1985 as a senior vice president and acting chief executive officer of UNC Resources, then a Falls Church-based company that mined and processed uranium in New Mexico, died of cancer May 25 at his home in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

Mr. Bush, who also had a home in Chevy Chase, worked more than 30 years in the Washington area for UNC Resources and its predecessor companies, including United Nuclear Corp. and Olin Matheson Chemical Corp.

He also served on the boards of several banks, including Potomac Valley Bank.

He was a board member and past president of the Congressional Country Club and a member of the Metropolitan Club.

Mr. Bush was born in Knoxville, Tenn., and raised in Washington. He graduated from Wilson High School and from the University of Maryland with a degree in business.

During World War II, he was a Navy aviator flying anti-submarine operations in the Atlantic and Caribbean.

For a short time after the war, he ran a cargo service in Colombia using government surplus aircraft.

Survivors include his wife of 52 years, Patricia McGehee Bush of Chevy Chase and Fort Lauderdale; two daughters, Dorothea Bush Frye of Bethesda and Danielle Bush Ayre of Potomac; a sister; and four grandchildren.

Katherine Wessels Crouch


Katherine Wessels Crouch, 88, a longtime Washington resident and volunteer who was the widow of a retired Foreign Service officer, died May 19 at a hospital in Grand Rapids, Mich., after a stroke.

Mrs. Crouch, who was a native of Baltimore, lived in Michigan for the past six months to be closer to her son.

She came to Washington in the 1930s and accompanied her husband, Edward C. Crouch, a retired Foreign Service officer who died in 1963, to Paris, Barcelona and Bogota, Colombia.

She was a volunteer at the National Cathedral annual flower show and a member of Diplomatic and Consular Officers, Retired.

Survivors include two children, Kathleen C. Thompson of Bethesda and Edward C. Crouch Jr. of Grand Rapids, and four grandchildren.

Franciszek Jozef 'Joe' Zelasko

Road Striper, Artist-Blacksmith

Franciszek Jozef "Joe" Zelasko, 57, who operated the road-striping business Applied Metals in Fairfax in the 1980s and spent the past decade as an artist-blacksmith, died of a cerebral hemorrhage May 8 at an Asheville, N.C., hospital. He lived in Burke.

He became an artist after a car accident in 1989 left him unable to work as a road striper, painting and removing roadway guidelines.

He turned to metal sculpting and used forging and welding techniques. Some of his work is on exhibit at the Art International Asheville gallery and appears in the spring 2000 issue of Anvil's Ring magazine.

A native of Asheville, he grew up in Washington and was a graduate of Western High School and the University of the District of Columbia.

He was in the Army in the early 1960s and worked at a California marina before becoming certified as an airplane mechanic and entering the road-striping industry. He settled in the Washington area in the early 1970s and continued road striping.

His memberships included the Artist-Blacksmith's Association of North America, the Blacksmith's Guild of the Potomac and the Southern Highlands Craft Guild.

Survivors include his wife of 24 years, Dr. Nancy F. Zelasko of Burke; his mother, Sarah Margaret Zelasko of Burnsville, N.C.; and a sister.

James 'Dave' Cooke

Electrical Engineer

James David "Dave" Cooke, 68, a retired electrical engineer who had worked for the FAA and IBM, died of heart and lung ailments May 29 at Inova Fairfax Hospital. He lived in Springfield.

Mr. Cooke, who was born in Franconia, was a 1950 graduate of Mount Vernon High School. He served with the Army in the Korean War, then received an electrical engineering degree from the University of Virginia before joining the Federal Aviation Administration.

He became a branch chief in the FAA's air traffic control automation division before retiring in 1982. He then worked for IBM's federal systems division in Gaithersburg until retiring altogether in 1990.

Mr. Cooke had been active in the Central Springfield Little League. His hobbies included playing the guitar and writing short stories. In recent years, he had taken courses in history and writing at George Mason University's learning and retirement institute.

Survivors include his wife, Margaret, of Springfield; a son, Andrew, of Lake Ridge; two daughters, Jennifer Elcano of Woodbridge and Linda Jordan of Fairfax Station; two brothers, William, of Accokeek, and Robert, of Locust Grove, Va.; two sisters, Jacqueline Walker of Alexandria and Beverly Lordi of Mechanicsville, Va.; and eight grandchildren.

Daniel R. Moreland


Daniel R. Moreland, 92, a Social Security Administration field representative who retired in the 1960s and became a volunteer at area organizations, died of cancer May 19 at the Virginian retirement community's nursing center.

A former Vienna resident, he moved to the Virginian in Fairfax four years ago and at his death lived in the nursing center.

He was a founder of the Committee for Helping Others in Vienna, a past board member of the Fairfax-Falls Church United Way and a past deacon at Vienna Presbyterian Church.

The Volunteer Clearinghouses of the Washington Metropolitan Area gave him the Metropolitan Volunteer Activist Award in 1986 and the Greater Vienna Chamber of Commerce named him citizen of the year in 1987. He received a lifetime achievement award from the Committee for Helping Others in 1999.

He was born in Smithton, Pa., and graduated from what is now George Washington University law school. He joined what is now the Social Security Administration in the 1930s and was a field representative throughout the country before settling in the Washington area in the 1960s.

His wife, Marjorie Moreland, died in 1988. He leaves no immediate survivors.

Robert Roy Herr

CIA Official

Robert Roy Herr, 72, a retired CIA branch chief who was a volunteer in the prison ministry at the Fairfax County Adult Detention Center, died of respiratory failure May 23 at Inova Fair Oaks Hospital. He lived in Oak Hill.

Mr. Herr began his 32-year career with the Central Intelligence Agency as a research analyst. He later worked as a senior analyst, deputy division chief and branch chief before retiring in 1983.

He became involved in the Catholic Jail Ministries in 1975. In April, he received the Good News Samaritan Award for 25 years of volunteer work at the Fairfax County jail.

He was born in Orrville, Ohio, and graduated cum laude from Kent State University in 1951. He received a master's degree in botany and a doctorate in plant pathology from George Washington University. He served in the Army in 1947 and 1948, and again in 1954 and 1955.

Survivors include his wife, Mary C. Herr of Oak Hill; six children, Deborah Potter of Blacksburg, Michael R. Herr of Herndon, Steven L. Herr of Richmond, Teresa Thomas of Orlando, Laura Robbins of Columbia and Judy A. Herr of Oakton; two brothers; two sisters; and 12 grandchildren.

Maureen E. Downey

Museum Specialist

Maureen Elizabeth Downey, 79, a retired museum specialist with the Smithsonian Institution's Museum of Natural History who was an authority on the starfish, died of cancer May 14 at a nursing home in San Juan Island, Wash. She had moved from the District to San Juan Island in 1987.

Miss Downey, a District native, attended George Washington University. She spent 30 years with the museum, where she began as a secretary, before retiring in 1987. Before that, she had spent a decade of government service with the Central Intelligence Agency and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. She also had worked briefly in the 1940s for Duke University in North Carolina.

During her years with the museum, she had traveled widely and had written technical works on the Atlantic starfish.

Survivors include a sister, Margaret Dwyer Cummings of Naples, Fla.