Diane Brickley Parsons
Information Service Founder
Diane "Dede" Brickley Parsons, 63, a co-founder of Telemet America Inc., a widely used information service for investment firms, died of lung cancer May 15 at Arleigh Burke Pavilion in McLean.
She was born in Boston and graduated from Newton College of the Sacred Heart, which closed in 1974. She earned a doctorate in biochemistry from Boston University in 1973.
She pursued research in the chemistry of Dupuytren's disease, a deforming condition of the hand, in a program between Harvard University and Boston's Children's Hospital.
In the 1970s, she joined the staff of George Washington University as an associate research professor of orthopedic surgery and anatomy at the School of Medicine, where her research focused on diseases in the back and joints. She investigated the Navy Diving Tables because many divers were developing unexplainable arthritic conditions. Her work suggested that the tables should be revised.
In 1983, in recognition of her work on the lumbar spine, she received the Volvo Award on Low Back Pain Research for her work on collagen chemistry in intervertebral discs.
Ms. Parsons left GWU in 1979 to form, with her husband, Telemet America Inc. Telemet produced hand-held devices that displayed stock market quotes via a digital radio signal.
Her interest in helping children led her to spend summers at what is now called the Legg Mason Tennis Tournament. She volunteered for more than 25 years coordinating transportation and organizing ball kids, prizes and other tasks for the tournament. She was also a significant contributor to the Washington Tennis and Education Foundation and most recently the coordinator between the foundation and the tournament.
Survivors include her husband, Fred Parsons of Alexandria, and a brother.
Nursing Home Owner
J.T. Butler, 69, a longtime area businessman who had co-owned Powhatan Nursing Home in Falls Church since 1995, died April 20 at his home in Springfield after a heart attack.
Mr. Butler became administrator of the 160-bed nursing home in 1976 and later co-owned the business with his wife and daughter.
He was born in Chilton County, Ala., the sixth of eight children. His given name was J.T., and his mother joked that she had been tired of naming her children. Mr. Butler, in turn,liked to say, "At least I didn't get a number."
He was an accounting and financial administration graduate of Ben Franklin University in Washington, where he settled in 1955.
He became chief executive of Case Decorators, a paint contracting business in Arlington, and in 1959 bought the business, renaming it Butler Decorators Inc. He had the business until about 1980.
His memberships included First Baptist Church of Alexandria.
Survivors include his wife of 51 years, Shirley Lewis Butler of Springfield; two children, Cyndi Butler of Springfield and Joel T. Butler of Boulder, Colo.; a sister; and two grandchildren.
Thomas C. Roberts
Air Force Lieutenant Colonel
Thomas Carlisle Roberts, 85, a retired Air Force lieutenant colonel who became chief of financial policy and accounting at the Defense Intelligence Agency, died May 15 at Holy Cross Hospital. He had pneumonia and suffered respiratory failure.
Col. Roberts, an Ashton resident, served in what became the Air Force for 26 years and mostly did accounting work before retiring in 1966.
He served in Europe during World War II and in the early 1960s was based in England as a comptroller.
He settled in the Washington area in the late 1960s and worked for the DIA until 1982. He then worked from home as a certified public accountant.
He was born in Berwind, Colo. He was an accounting graduate of the University of Denver, where he also received a master's degree in business administration. He received a master's degree in taxation from American University.
He coached Little League and was a master bridge player. He also played golf.
Survivors include his wife of 63 years, Genevieve Lugar Roberts of Ashton; two children, Betty Roberts of Germany and Stephen Roberts of Ashton; a sister; and a grandson.