Richard Robert Rocha Jr.
Human Resources Specialist
Richard Robert Rocha Jr., 65, a retired human resources specialist with the Government Printing Office, died of congestive heart failure Oct. 8 at his home in Bowie.
Mr. Rocha worked at the printing office for about 10 years before retiring in 1994. He previously worked as a human resources classification specialist for the National Institutes of Health, the Goddard Space Agency, the Department of Agriculture, St. Elizabeths Hospital and D.C. General Hospital.
He was born in Greeley, Colo. and had lived in the Washington area for42 years. He graduated from the University of Maryland with a degree in business administration. From 1959 to 1963, he served in the Navy as a corpsman, worked at hospitals in Beaufort, S.C., and Portsmouth, Va., and was pharmacist mate at the U.S. Naval Academy.
Mr. Rocha coached baseball, basketball, and football at Boys and Girls Clubs in Lanham and Bowie. He was named coach of the year in football in 1989.
His son Richard Robert Rocha, in 2003.
Survivors include his wife of 41 years, Frances Wain Harris Rocha of Bowie; two sons, Ryan William Rocha of Laytonsville and Randall Wayne Rocha of Brookeville; a brother; three sisters; and five grandchildren.
Cecil Jerome Rich Sr.
Cecil Jerome Rich Sr., 62, who taught science in the D.C. public schools for more than 30 years, died Oct. 17 of congestive heart failure at Washington Hospital Center. He lived in Landover.
Mr. Rich came to Washington in 1962 to teach at the Spingarn STAY Instruction Unit. He later taught science at Kenilworth, Nalle, Maury, Young, Gibbs and Weatherless elementary schools. He last taught at Plummer Elementary School before retiring in 1995.
He was born in Kinston, N.C., and graduated from North Carolina Central University with a bachelor's degree in physical science and biology.
He was a member of the Gamma Pi chapter of the Omega Psi Phi fraternity, the Washington Teachers Union and the National Science Foundation.
His marriage to Bessie Garrett ended in divorce.
Survivors include his wife of 24 years, Jean Bruce Rich of Landover; two children from his first marriage, Cheryl J. Randolph of Washington and Cecil J. Rich Jr. of Laurel; his father, Elisha White of Kinston; a brother, Jerry Rich of Rockville; and seven grandchildren.
Nelle Whitlock Hernandez
Nelle Whitlock Hernandez, 90, a secretary with the Department of Agriculture, died Oct. 21 at Avalon House, a retirement home in Falls Church. She had dementia.
Mrs. Hernandez was born in Adair County, Ky., and came to the Washington area in 1935. After studying at the old Washington School for Secretaries, she became a secretary with various offices in the Agriculture Department, where she worked from 1937 until her retirement in 1967.
She lived in the District and Silver Spring before moving to Arlington in the early 1950s. She lived in Falls Church for the past 20 years.
She enjoyed gardening and needlework. She volunteered for the American Red Cross and the Growth and Development Center in Arlington, a preschool for handicapped children.
From 1935 to her death, she was a member of the First Baptist Church of Washington, where she was a Sunday school teacher and a member of the church's diaconate.
A son, Carlos W. Hernandez, died in 1959.
Survivors include her husband of 66 years, Carlos J. Hernandez of Alexandria; a daughter, Evelyn Hewitt of Alexandria; two grandchildren; and one great-grandson.
Kathy Ann Barefoot Canavan
Kathy Ann Barefoot Canavan, 50, an administrative assistant who worked in the graduate program of the Art History and Archaeology Department at the University of Maryland, died of a brain aneurysm Oct. 14 at Washington Hospital Center.
Ms. Canavan, a Greenbelt resident, worked at the University of Maryland for 30 years.
She was a native Washingtonian and 1972 graduate of High Point High School.
Her marriages to Charles Stewart, Tom Canavan and Pat Miller ended in divorce.
Survivors include two sons from her second marriage, Thomas and Michael Canavan, both of Greenbelt; her parents, Phyllis and Dale Barefoot of Hagerstown; and three sisters, Paula Demerer of Clarks Summit, Pa., Susan McKown of Virginia Beach and Lori Carl of Bowie.
Meurice Cohen Ochsman
Meurice Cohen Ochsman, 76, a volunteer, died of cancer Oct. 20 at Sibley Memorial Hospital.
A lifelong resident of Washington, Mrs. Ochsman graduated from Roosevelt High School and Marjorie Webster Junior College in the District.
She married at 19 and raised a family. She also was active in many charities, from Israel Bonds and the Hebrew Home to the Tourette Syndrome Association.
Mrs. Ochsman played tennis into her 60s, representing the Woodmont Country Club, and bowled regularly in leagues. She also attended Washington Redskins games for more than 50 years.
She was a member of the Washington Hebrew Congregation.
Her daughter, Wendy Ochsman, died in 2001.
Survivors include her husband of 57 years, Ralph Ochsman of Washington; four children, Sharon Ochsman of Chapel Hill, N.C., Michael Ochsman of Ketchum, Idaho, Jeffrey Ochsman and Bruce Ochsman, both of Potomac; a sister, Norma Lee of Potomac; and six grandchildren.
Louise P. Smith
Louise P. Smith, 82, a secretary for the Internal Revenue Service before retiring in 1979, died of a heart attack Oct. 22 at Inova Fairfax Hospital. She lived in Springfield.
Mrs. Smith was born in Oxford, N.C., and moved to the Washington area in 1956. She worked for the IRS for 23 years.
She was a member of the First Baptist Church of Springfield.
Survivors include her husband, Sam Smith of Springfield; two children, Kathy McKay and Robert Smith, also of Springfield; and three grandchildren.
Michael J. Phipps
Michael J. Phipps, 37, a lieutenant commander in the Navy's medical corps and head of spine services at the National Naval Medical Center at Bethesda, died Oct. 16 in a traffic accident near Forest Lake, Minn. He was a Kensington resident.
The Minnesota State Patrol said that Dr. Phipps, who was in the area visiting friends, was walking on Interstate 35 about 2 a.m. after leaving a nearby Veterans of Foreign Wars post. He was struck and killed by a car driven by a 59-year-old St. Paul, Minn., man. No charges have yet been filed, police said.
Dr. Phipps was born in Murphysboro, Ill., and graduated from Ohio State University. He earned his medical degree from Ohio State in 1993 and did his orthopedic surgery residency at Bethesda Naval Medical Center. He also had a spine reconstructive fellowship at the Twin Cities Spine Center in Minnesota.
He had served with the Naval Medical Corps since 1993, as a flight surgeon in Cherry Point, N.C., and at the Naval Medical Center in San Diego as well as Bethesda. He also served aboard the USNS Comfort in Iraq.
Survivors include his wife, Andrea Phipps, and two daughters, Kara and Meghan Phipps, all of Gaithersburg; his parents, Michael and Margaret Phipps of Sunset Beach, N.C.; a sister; and three brothers.
Frances Craven Riggs
Frances Craven Riggs, 80, a volunteer and homemaker, died of lung disease and complications from Parkinson's disease Oct. 15 at a nursing home in Santa Fe, N.M., where she lived for the past six years.
Mrs. Riggs, who lived in Vienna from 1959 until 1998, had been a member of Alcoholics Anonymous, for whom she volunteered. She enjoyed the outdoors and animals, particularly birds and dogs.
Born in Evanston, Ill., she attended Colorado College and moved to the Washington area with her husband. Her marriage to Albert C. Riggs ended in divorce.
Survivors include three children, Katherine Anne Riggs of Ojo Sarco, N.M., Theodore Riggs of Redmond, Wash., and Albert Charles Riggs III of Castlebar, Ireland; a brother; and two grandchildren.
Sheryl Ann Colleli Hogan
Sheryl Ann Colleli Hogan, 38, a financial officer with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, died Oct. 10 of breast cancer at her home in Silver Spring.
Ms. Hogan, who was known as Sheri, joined NOAA in 1992, working with the Fisheries Office for Law Enforcement and, later, the National Ocean Service. For the past 10 years, she was national budget officer for NOAA's Office for Law Enforcement.
She was born in Silver Spring and grew up in Rockville. She graduated from Wheaton High School in 1984 and from the University of Maryland in 1994.
From 1979 to 1992, she worked in a variety of positions, including theater manager, for the Roth and Loews theater chains in Montgomery County. She enjoyed going to the beach and was a fan of the Washington Redskins, Baltimore Orioles and U-Md. Terrapins.
Survivors include her husband of 11 years, Robert J. Hogan of Silver Spring; two daughters, Courtney Marie and Haley Marie, both of Silver Spring; her mother, Claudia M. Colleli of Silver Spring; two brothers, R.J. Colleli of Vienna and Frank E. Colleli of Silver Spring; and two sisters, Cathy M. Colleli and Jo Ann McLean, both of Olney.
Wesley "Don" Randol, 76, a retired Navy chief yeoman, died Oct. 19 of complications from Pick's disease at Iliff Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Dunn Loring. He lived in Vienna for more than 40 years.
Mr. Randol was born in Garden City, Mo., and graduated from Lathrop High School. He attend the University of Maryland and Georgetown University before enlisting in the Navy in 1946. While in the Navy, he was assigned to the Office of the Naval Attache at the embassies Tokyo and Jakarta, Indonesia, as well as the Office of Naval Intelligence at the Pentagon.
After retiring from the Navy in 1966, he worked for 11 years for Task Force 157, a Navy intelligence organization that was the military's only network of undercover spies and agents operating abroad using commercial and business "cover" for espionage. Mr. Randol worked for the organization in Frankfurt, Germany, and Manila. He retired again in 1977, when the organization was abolished.
In retirement, he enjoyed fishing, yardwork and especially woodworking.
Survivors include his wife of 52 years, Ann Randol of Vienna; two daughters, Kerry Johnston of McKinney, Tex., and Deborah Ingram of Reston; three sisters; and four grandchildren.
James Ronan IV
James Ronan IV, 39, a photographer and writer, died of brain cancer Oct. 18 at his home in Kensington.
Mr. Ronan had worked as a writer and marketing strategist for General Physics Corp. since 2000. From 1988 to 2000, he was a photographer and writer for the Bomstein Agency. He was also a freelance photographer specializing in landscapes, architecture, wedding events and portraits.
He was born in St. Paul, Minn., and came to the Washington area as a infant. He grew up in Potomac and graduated from Gonzaga College High School in Northwest Washington.
Mr. Ronan lived by the school's motto, "Building Men for Others," relatives said. He donated countless hours and his photographic talents to Gonzaga. Every major publication of Gonzaga contains "photos by Jim Ronan."
The Rev. Allen P. Novotny, Society of Jesus president of Gonzaga College High School, said: "Jim helped us tell the Gonzaga story with his talent. By virtue of his service and example, he is now and always will be part of that story."
Mr. Ronan received a bachelor's degree in English from Catholic University.
He was active in community activities at Holy Redeemer Catholic Church in Kensington, where he was an assistant coach for his son's baseball team. He had a great love for cooking, political banter and gardening.
Survivors include his wife of 14 years, Grace Demetrovits Ronan of Kensington; a son, James, also of Kensington; parents Dr. James and Lucille Ronan of Potomac; and two sisters, Mary Ronan Hills of Potomac and Catherine Ronan Karrels of San Francisco.
Oliver J. DeZoute
Oliver J. "Ollie" DeZoute, 82, a retired Federal Aviation Agency electronics engineer who worked on satellite communications systems, died Oct. 11 at Inova Fairfax Hospital after a heart attack.
Mr. DeZoute, who lived in Fairfax County, worked for the FAA for more than 30 years. He retired in 1977.
Mr. DeZoute was a native of Sheboygan, Wis. He served as a radio and aircraft repair technician in the Army Air Forces during World War II. He graduated from the Milwaukee School of Engineering in 1949 and then joined the FAA, which transferred him to a number of cities in Indiana, Minnesota, New Jersey and elsewhere. He moved to the Washington area in the early 1960s.
His interest in communications led to a lifelong hobby as a ham radio operator.
Survivors include his wife of 57 years, Eleanor J. DeZoute of Fairfax; three children, JoAnn Casteel of Fairfax and Kevin and Eric DeZoute, both of Manassas; two brothers; three grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.