Bette Williams Quinn, 86, a hostess and the wife of an Army general, died Sept. 26 at her home in Arlington after a series of strokes.

Mrs. Quinn came to Washington in 1945 with her husband, Lt. Gen. William Wilson Quinn, who played a key role in the transition of the wartime Office of Strategic Services into the Central Intelligence Agency.

Mrs. Quinn was born in Savannah, Ga., the daughter of a doctor. In her teens, she was named queen of the city's Paper Festival and was recognized for having "the best legs in Savannah." She graduated from what is now Armstrong Atlantic State University in Savannah.

After marrying in 1939, she lived on Army posts throughout the world. Her husband was an intelligence officer and, from 1964 to 1966, commander of the 7th Army in Germany.

"You're not in the Army; I am," her husband told her when they married. "You don't have to take orders from anyone, including the CO's [commanding officer's] wife."

For many years, they lived on Connecticut Avenue NW in the District, where Mrs. Quinn was known as a consummate hostess and cook.

At the end of her life, she refused all sustenance, except for a few sips of champagne.

Her husband of 61 years died in 2000.

Survivors include three children, the writer Sally Quinn Bradlee of Washington, Donna Quinn Robbins of San Francisco and William Wilson Quinn Jr. of Phoenix; four grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Bette Williams Quinn, who grew up in Savannah, Ga., was known as a consummate hostess and cook.