Carey Anne Lackman

Senatorial Chief of Staff

Carey Anne Lackman, 48, chief of staff for Sen. Arlen Specter (R-Pa.), died of cancer July 14 at her home in Washington.

Ms. Lackman first worked in the senator's office in 1991, serving as finance director and legislative aide until 1999. She was Specter's finance director during his reelection campaigns in 1992 and 1998.

After forming her own political consulting business in 1999, she rejoined the senator's staff in December 2001 as chief of staff. In that capacity, she hired the senatorial staff, managed legislative affairs, supervised five district offices in Pennsylvania and was Specter's primary liaison with lobbyists, other senators and the White House. She was one of the first women to be chief of staff for a senator.

Last year, a Web site devoted to Pennsylvania politics named her one of the most powerful women in Pennsylvania politics.

As a private consultant, Ms. Lackman worked with the National Republican Senatorial Committee during the 2000 Republican convention, organizing dinners and other convention-related events.

In 2001, she was chief operating officer of conventions for the Biotechnology Industry Organization, a Washington trade group, before her return to Capitol Hill.

Ms. Lackman was born in Washington and grew up on various military bases as the daughter of an Army colonel. She graduated from West Springfield High School in Springfield. After graduating from Radford University in 1977, she joined the staff of Sen. H. John Heinz III (R-Pa.). She held several positions in Heinz's office, including finance director, until 1985.

From 1985 to 1991, she lived in Los Angeles, where she did political fundraising, primarily for Republican candidates.

Her marriage to Shane Tatum ended in divorce.

Survivors include Clyde H. Slease III, a longtime companion whom she married in the last days of her life, of Washington; her mother, Anne L. Lackman of Middleburg; three brothers, William F. Lackman III of Berryville, Va., Frank X. Lackman of Centreville and Paul M. Lackman of Austin; and three sisters, Mary Murray and Anne Foky, both of Charlottesville, and Julia Glowacki of Centreville.

Thomas D. Brandt

Journalist, Health Strategist

Thomas D. Brandt, 58, a spokesman and strategist for a number of health-related organizations, died July 10 at his home in Alexandria of complications from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

After Army service, Mr. Brandt was a reporter in Florida and became deputy city editor at the Miami News.

He moved to Washington in the late 1970s to become a senior legislative analyst for the House of Representatives. There, in the House's pre-TV days, he developed a real-time system of summarizing proceedings and debate for members.

In the early 1980s, he headed the Capitol Hill bureau of the Washington Times, where he was chief political writer.

On Dec. 6, 1984, the House Ethics Committee served Mr. Brandt with a subpoena after he obtained a leaked copy of the panel's report on Rep. Geraldine A. Ferraro (D-N.Y.).

Mr. Brandt reported that the committee found Ferraro, the 1984 Democratic nominee for vice president, had violated House financial disclosure rules. Mr. Brandt's article quoted from the still-unreleased report and included an account of the closed-door deliberations of the committee.

The subpoena, which sought to determine how he obtained the information, was dropped two weeks later amid protests by journalism organizations.

In 1987, Mr. Brandt became director of communications for the presidential commission on the AIDS epidemic, established by President Ronald Reagan and chaired by retired Adm. James D. Watkins. He held a similar post on the national commission on AIDS, which succeeded the Watkins commission.

He later was a vice president of the public relations firm Ogilvy Adams & Rinehart; vice president for external affairs of Drug Strategies, a not-for-profit organization seeking improvements in U.S. drug policy; and director of federal government communications for the American Cancer Society.

In 1994, Mr. Brandt started a consulting practice, where he worked until he became too ill. He continued writing occasional opinion pieces for newspapers across the country.

Mr. Brandt was a native of Pittsburgh and a graduate of Tarkio College in Missouri. He received a master's degree in international relations from Brandeis University.

Survivors include his wife of 21 years, Maria J. Vorel of Alexandria; two children, Sara Brandt-Vorel and Jeremy Brandt-Vorel, also of Alexandria; and a brother.

Marcia K. Rosenthal

Publications Editor

Marcia Kensinger Rosenthal, 80, who worked from 1979 to 1992 at the Bethesda-based Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, where she became a publications editor, died July 7 at a retirement community in Chapel Hill, N.C. She had Alzheimer's disease.

Mrs. Rosenthal was born in Lisbon, Iowa, and raised in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. She was a 1945 sociology graduate of Coe College in Cedar Rapids and received a master's degree in social work from the University of Denver in 1950.

She was a social worker in Iowa, Texas and Perryville, in northeastern Maryland, before settling in the Washington area in 1956. In the late 1950s, she did social work for the Prince George's County social services department.

She was a member of the PEO Sisterhood and co-founded a chapter in Bethesda.

She moved to Chapel Hill from Bethesda in 2000.

Her husband, Dr. David Rosenthal, whom she married in 1950, died in 1996.

Survivors include three children, Laura Rosenthal of Brookline, Mass., Scott Rosenthal of Glenelg and Dr. Amy Rosenthal of Chapel Hill; a sister; and six grandchildren.

Thomas Francis Hanton

Fairfax County Schools Employee

Thomas Francis Hanton, 71, a retired director of design and construction with the Fairfax County public school system, died July 7 at his home in Vienna. He had Alzheimer's disease.

Mr. Hanton was born in Chicago. He served in the Marine Corps during the Korean War. He received a degree in electronic engineering from the American Television Institute.

He worked for more than a decade with Computer Sciences Corp. before joining Fairfax County public schools in 1974. According to his successor, Gene Kelly, Mr. Hanton presided over more than 100 school renovations and the construction of 30 new school buildings during his 21-year tenure. He retired in 1995.

He was a member of Our Lady of Good Counsel Catholic Church in Vienna. He was a former president of the church's men's club and the parish council, served on the building committee, was a Eucharistic minister and was a teacher of marriage-preparation classes.

Survivors include his wife of 46 years, Marianne Hanton of Vienna; two children, Maureen Hanton of Fairfax and Tom Hanton of Vienna; and three grandchildren.

Virginia Lee Craddock Oberlin

Nursery School Teacher

Virginia Lee Craddock Oberlin, 81, who was a nursery teacher at the Bethesda Community School from 1963 to 1979, died July 1 of a stroke at the Rockville Nursing Home, where she resided.

Before working at the nursery school, Mrs. Oberlin had been a clerk-typist in the office of the secretary of the interior from 1945 to 1947. From 1947 to 1950, she was a placement assistant in the personnel division of the Navy Department.

She was born in Centralia, Wash., and moved to the District when she was 12. She graduated from Theodore Roosevelt High School and from the College of William and Mary.

She lived in Bethesda from 1949 to 2001 and was a longtime member of Bradley Hills Presbyterian Church.

Her husband of 54 years, Paul Frederick Oberlin, died in 2001.

A son, Douglas Oberlin, died in 1954.

Survivors include two children, Paul Christopher Oberlin of Bethesda and Nancy Lee Oddi of Porter, Ind.; and three grandchildren.

Virginia Martin Diserens

Department Store Supervisor

Virginia Martin Diserens, 84, a sales clerk and department supervisor for the Hecht Co. for more than 20 years, died July 10 at the Casey House hospice in Rockville after a stroke.

Mrs. Diserens joined Hecht's in 1958 as a part-time sales clerk at the Prince George's Plaza store in Hyattsville. She later became a full-time employee and was named supervisor in the women's clothing department.

She transferred to the Hecht's store in Laurel in 1970 and continued to work as a sales clerk in the clothing department until she retired in 1981.

Mrs. Diserens was born in Nevada, Iowa, and grew up in Ames, where she briefly attended Iowa State University. She lived in Omaha before settling in the Washington area in 1950. She was a Laurel resident before moving to Harmony Hall, an assisted living facility in Columbia, in 2003.

She and her husband traveled in the United States as well as Australia, New Zealand, Europe and Aruba.

Survivors include her husband of 62 years, Bob Diserens of Columbia; a daughter, Ann Dahlin of Olney; a sister; three grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

Fred C. Mattern Jr.

Patent and Trademark Official

Fred Conrad Mattern Jr., 74, a lawyer who spent 30 years at the Patent and Trademark Office and retired in 1985 as chairman of its appeals board, died July 10 at Fauquier Hospital after a heart attack. He lived in Warrenton.

From 1985 to 1993, Mr. Mattern worked at the law firm of Birch, Stewart, Kolasch & Birch in Falls Church. He specialized in providing expert-witness testimony on mechanical engineering matters.

He was born in Washington and raised in Prince George's County. He was a 1948 graduate of Eastern High School in the District. He was a 1952 mechanical engineering graduate of the University of Maryland and a 1960 graduate of American University law school.

He was a Navy veteran of the Korean War.

He collected coins, stamps and toy trains.

Survivors include his wife of 52 years, Charlotte Gurley Mattern of Warrenton; four children, Michael Mattern of Herndon, Scott F. Mattern of Silver Spring, Christopher J. Mattern of Alexandria and Lisa Waterbury of Keswick, Va.; and four grandchildren.

Lewis J. Darter Jr.


Lewis J. Darter Jr., 96, a former archivist at the National Archives and Records Administration, died July 11 at Casey House hospice in Rockville of cardiac arrest. He lived in Bethesda.

Mr. Darter was born in Bowling Green, Ky., and raised in Mississippi, New Orleans and Montgomery, Ala. He graduated in 1931 from the University of Pennsylvania, where he also did graduate work in history.

He came to Washington in 1936 to work at the National Archives, which had been established two years earlier. His first assignment was with a Works Progress Administration project to survey available federal records. He helped develop the records disposal and retention schedules, which became the basic methods of handling most federal records. He also collected weather records that had previously been scattered among agencies, including the Army Signal Corps.

During World War II, he served in the Navy and did records management work in Philadelphia and Los Angeles.

Mr. Darter returned to Washington in 1945 and became the civilian archivist for the Navy. In 1958, he returned to the National Archives, where he became deputy assistant archivist for records appraisal and retention.

An assignment to help set up an archives for the U.S. Virgin Islands led to a lasting attachment to the area and yearly vacations on St. Croix. He retired in 1968 as assistant archivist in charge of the National Archives.

His wife, Sarah Hibbs Darter, whom he married in 1934, died in 1994.

Survivors include two children, L.J. "Jeff" Darter III of Tucker, Ga., and Susan Hunt of Bethesda; two sisters; and three grandchildren.