The Oct. 7 obituary of John P. Heard incorrectly reported the date of death. He died Sept. 27. (Published 10/9/04)
Pota Lynard Chipouras
Postal Executive Assistant
Pota Lynard Chipouras, 97, who had worked as an executive assistant for the U.S. Postal Service, died of a stroke Oct. 4 at AAA Warmcare of Potomac, an assisted living facility.
Mrs. Chipouras began working at the postal service as an administrative assistant. She retired in 1974 after 25 years. She last worked in the Postmaster General's Office.
She was born in Washington and attended Central High School. She left school to help her elder sister care for their eight younger siblings.
During World War II, she volunteered with the American Red Cross.
She lived in the District until 1982, when she moved to Potomac.
Mrs. Chipouras was a member of St. Sophia Greek Orthodox Cathedral in Washington and the Philoptochos Society, a Greek Orthodox philanthropic organization.
Her husband, Peter D. Chipouras, died in 1984.
Survivors include a son, Dr. Theodore P. Chipouras of Bethesda; a sister, Effie Lynard Kalcounos of Olney; a brother, Eddie Lynard of Cape Coral, Fla.; and two granddaughters.
Ann Fulton Brown
Ann Fulton Brown, 37, who was a member service representative for AAA's Potomac branch in Fairfax, died Sept. 27 of a self-inflicted gunshot wound at Baptist Hospital in Winston-Salem, N.C., where she had been living since 2003.
Ms. Brown was born in Raleigh, N.C., and grew up in Annandale. She graduated from W.T. Woodson High School in Fairfax and from George Mason University with a bachelor's degree in international relations.
After working for AAA from 1991 to 1998, she provided in-home care for her ailing mother at the family home in Annandale.
She was a member of Good Shepherd Episcopal Church in Burke.
Survivors include her sisters, Mary Beth Wafer of New Haven, Conn., Sara Brown Gibson of Burke and Laura Colvin Brown of Winston-Salem, N.C.; and a brother, Joel Colvin Brown of Walnut Cove, N.C.
Ruth Blumenthal Lafsky
Ruth Blumenthal Lafsky, 92, who was a member of Temple Sinai and participated in the Sisterhood of that congregation, died of cancer Oct. 1 at Tall Oaks at Reston, an assisted living facility.
Mrs. Lafsky was born in Baltimore and moved to Washington as a child. She graduated from McKinley Tech High School and later attended art school in Washington.
She served as a volunteer nurse's aide at Walter Reed Army Medical Center during World War II.
She devoted herself to her family and to cultivation of her sharp wit. "She lived to be a character and wasn't particularly interested in credentials," said her son, Robert D. Lafsky.
Mrs. Lafsky enjoyed reading novels and playing Scrabble.
She lived in Bethesda until 1999 and then moved to Reston to be close to her son.
Her husband, Dr. Benjamin P. Lafsky, whom she married in 1948, died in 2002.
In addition to her son, of Great Falls, survivors include two brothers and three grandchildren.
Sidney Lowitz, 87, an aeronautical engineer who worked on lunar exploration and who helped train members of the Israeli Air Force, died of Alzheimer's disease Oct. 4 in Silver Spring. He lived at Trude's House, a senior care facility in Rockville.
Mr. Lowitz, who was born in Brooklyn, graduated from New York University in 1942, where he was president of student government. He did graduate work at Hofstra University.
During World War II, he was an officer in the Army, stationed at Fort Knox. After the war, he went to work on Long Island for the company now known as the Northrop Grumman Corp. He was involved with early efforts to explore the moon robotically.
In 1963, he moved to Columbus, Ohio, where he worked for the Newark Aerospace Guidance and Metrology Center of the Air Force. He helped train members of the Israeli Air Force from 1968 to 1972. He retired in 1980.
Mr. Lowitz moved to Rockville in 1985 to be near his children and grandchildren. He was involved with a number of Jewish organizations in the area, including Jewish War Veterans.
Along with regularly reading a number of daily newspapers front to back, he took it upon himself to get to know by name, interest and activity everybody in his community, including clerks in the grocery store, library and bank.
Survivors include his wife of 63 years, Miriam Rifken Lowitz of Rockville; two daughters, Madeline Lowitz of Takoma Park and Barbara Moss of Arlington; and three grandchildren.
Kathryn N. Detwiler
'Government Girl,' Church Elder
Kathryn N. Detwiler, 85, an ordained deacon and elder of Idylwood Presbyterian Church in Falls Church, died Sept. 30 of complications from Alzheimer's disease at Virginia Hospital Center-Arlington. She had lived at the Jefferson, a senior living community in Arlington, since 1995.
Mrs. Detwiler was born in Java, Va., and spent her formative years in Charlottesville. She lived in the Washington area for 66 years -- 50 years in Arlington and 16 in Falls Church, where she was a longtime member of Idylwood. She also sang in the church choir.
She came to Washington in 1938 and worked briefly in private industry before becoming one of the "government girls" in 1941. She worked as a secretary at the U.S. Department of Agriculture and then at the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (now Department of Health and Human Services). She retired in 1977.
In retirement, she was a dedicated world traveler, visiting China, Russia, Germany, Austria, England, France, Panama, the Caribbean, Canada and the North Pole. She was a member of the Cosmos Club and a 10-year "Pink Lady" volunteer at Virginia Hospital Center. She also was an avid Washington Redskins fan and through her final days watched Redskins broadcasts.
Her first marriage to William T. Prater ended in divorce.
Mrs. Detwiler's second husband, Samuel B. Detwiler Jr., died in 1978.
Survivors include three children from her first marriage, Robert W. Prater of Berryville, Va., Virginia N. Strniste of Marana, Ariz., and Mary P. Ishmael of Valhalla, N.Y.; a stepdaughter, Margaret M. Detwiler of Arlington; a sister; two granddaughters; and two great-grandchildren.
Helen Robertshaw Sharpe
Helen Robertshaw Sharpe, 94, a longtime resident of Arlington and a former bank secretary, died of pneumonia Oct. 3 at her home in St. Petersburg, Fla., where she had lived since 1996.
Mrs. Sharpe was born in Washington and grew up in Falls Church, where her father raised and sold flowers. She graduated from Business High School in Washington in 1928 and attended Strayer College. She married Howard Sharpe in 1933, and the couple moved to Arlington.
After her marriage, she went to work for the Bank of Commerce and Savings in Washington, where she became the first female employee with the title of corporate secretary. In the mid-1930s, she also became the first woman to address the National Bankers Association.
She left her bank job at the onset of World War II to be with her husband, who was stationed in Arizona, Florida, Kansas and California. After the war, the couple moved to Fairfax and then back to Arlington, where Mrs. Sharpe lived until she moved to Florida. She was a homemaker while her two children were growing up.
A lifelong member of the Christian Science Church, she was a volunteer with the church's Lynn House, an assisted living facility in Arlington, and with the Christian Science Reading Room in Falls Church. She was an avid gardener who always kept a flower arrangement in her home and was a former member of the Washington Golf and Country Club and the Arlington Neighbor's Club.
Her husband, a general contractor and real estate developer, died in 1979.
Survivors include two children, Howard Sharpe of St. Petersburg Beach, Fla., and Marilyn Collom of Englewood, Fla.; a brother; and three grandchildren.
Wayne L. Bryant
Motor Coach Operator
Wayne L. Bryant, 61, who worked as a motor coach operator for the Navy Department from 1976 until his retirement in 1997, died of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Sept. 30 at his home in Washington.
Among his responsibilities was driving members of the Navy Band and Honor Guard to their scheduled performances.
Mr. Bryant, a Washington resident for 35 years, was born in Schenectady, N.Y. He grew up in Fort Johnson, N.Y. and Rensselaer, N.Y.
He served two years in the Army in Vietnam during the war there.
He was a member of the American Legion and the Disabled American Veterans. His personal interests included NASCAR and traveling.
Survivors include three brothers.
John P. Heard
Records Management Official
John P. Heard, 74, a records management administrator who worked for various government agencies in Washington before retiring in the early 1980s, died Sept. 14 at his home in Arlington after a heart attack.
Mr. Heard was born in London and was raised there and in Zimbabwe, where his father owned and managed a hotel. Mr. Heard worked a series of odd jobs while traveling to Canada, New Zealand and other countries.
Settling in the United States, he served in the Army from 1957 to 1960 and subsequently graduated from San Francisco State University. He moved to Washington in the late 1960s to work in records management for the National Archives.
He did similar work for the Treasury Department, the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Library of Congress. During his civil service career, Mr. Heard took night courses at George Washington University, from which he earned a law degree.
In retirement, Mr. Heard worked as a tax preparer.
He was a longtime supporter of Arena Stage, the Phillips Collection and the Folger Shakespeare Library.
Survivors include his wife of 33 years, Lucia M. Heard of Arlington; two stepchildren, Marina McGrew of New York and Wesley W. McGrew of Washington; a brother; and four step-grandchildren.