Joseph Thomas Corbley, 78, who was a research analyst and project manager for the Navy Department and the Naval Air Systems Command, died of pneumonia April 11 at his home in Kensington.

Mr. Corbley, a native Washingtonian, graduated from Gonzaga High School. He enlisted in the Navy during World War II and served in the Pacific until the end of the war.

He graduated from Georgetown University in 1948 with a bachelor's degree in economics and philosophy and later pursued graduate studies at American University.

Mr. Corbley began his career in government service in 1958. As a research analyst and project manager for the Navy Department and the Naval Air Systems Command, he was involved in managing the logistics of sales of advanced aircraft to foreign allies.

He also developed plans so that foreign partners could recruit and train personnel, maintain the equipment and meet budget requirements. He possessed a working knowledge of many airborne defense systems, including fighters, bombers, helicopters and missile systems, as well as advanced communications, radar and guidance systems.

His work took him around the globe, where he experienced major earthquakes in Peru and Iran. He was sitting in the parade stands in Cairo when Egyptian President Anwar Sadat was assassinated in 1981, said his son Michael Corbley.

He retired in 1982 to work for Information Spectrum, a private consulting firm.

Mr. Corbley was a member of Christ the King Catholic Parish in Silver Spring and later Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in Kensington. For many years, he was involved in SAGE, an organization that promoted the idea of financial assistance for students attending parochial schools.

He was a lifetime baseball fan who competed in baseball and softball city leagues. As a youngster, he would accompany his mother and grandmother to Old Griffith Stadium to watch the Washington Senators, because in those days, women were allowed to sit downstairs in the field boxes only if accompanied by a male escort.

His avocations included literature and geography, and he owned a complete collection of National Geographic magazines dating to 1920.

An infant granddaughter, Jane Levey, died in 1992.

Survivors include his wife of 46 years, Margaret Kleinstuber Corbley of Kensington; four children, Michael Corbley of Boston, Catherine Levey of Easton, Md., Maureen Splain of Ijamsville and Kevin Corbley of Fort Collins, Colo.; and seven grandchildren.