Howard Rausch


Howard Rausch, 76, a journalist, editor and publisher whose specialty was information technology, died Jan. 13 of melanoma at Washington Hospice in the District.

Mr. Rausch was born in New York City and grew up in Milford, Mass., and Beacon, N.Y. He received his undergraduate degree in journalism and experimental psychology in 1950 from the School of Communications at Syracuse University and went to work soon thereafter for the Philadelphia Bulletin. For the next 15 years, he worked for the Bulletin, the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times. From 1965 to 1968, he was Moscow bureau chief for McGraw Hill.

From 1969 to 1980, he was president, editor and publisher of Advanced Technology Publications, headquartered in Newton, Mass., a company that produced a monthly magazine, Laser Focus, and two newsletters. In 1983, he founded, edited and served as publisher of Lightwave, a magazine about the emerging field of optical communications, as well as a related newsletter. He also coordinated trade shows and provided custom market research.

He sold Lightwave in 1990 and moved to the District in 1991 to become technical director for the Optical Society of America. From 1992 until his death, he was president and editor of Capital Access, a company providing Internet content for several firms specializing in telecommunications and fiber-optic technologies. He also worked as a contractor for the U.S. Department of Commerce's International Trade Administration, editing the organization's annual U.S. Industrial Outlook. He also gave occasional lectures on communications at Georgetown University.

Mr. Rausch was an avid tennis player, a skier and a champion chess player, winning several tournaments while representing the Overseas Press Club and the Cosmos Club. He also sponsored District public school students so they could attend chess tournaments and meet members of the Cosmos Club.

Mr. Rausch's marriage to Lara Rausch ended in divorce.

Survivors include his wife of 25 years, Sidra Levine Cohn Rausch of Washington; a stepson, Jonathan Cohn of Washington; and a sister.

Natalie Brentnall

Military Wife, Volunteer

Natalie deTable Burden Brentnall, 95, wife of an Air Force officer, a volunteer and a church member, died of coronary artery disease Jan. 24 at the Knollwood retirement center in Washington. She also had Alzheimer's disease.

She was born in Syracuse, N.Y., and graduated from the Ogontz School for Girls in New Hampshire. In 1929, she married Maj. Gen. S.R. Brentnall, who became the Air Force assistant chief of staff for guided missiles.

Mrs. Brentnall lived in Washington for 60 years. She volunteered during World War II as a government switchboard operator and retained the ability to get telephone operators to help her throughout her life, a granddaughter said. She also volunteered for the former House of Mercy Maternity Home in the District. At home, Mrs. Brentnall enjoyed gardening.

Her husband died in 1965.

Survivors include a son, Col. Burden Brentnall of Blaine, Wash.; three granddaughters; and four great-grandchildren.

Leonard P. 'Tony' Carroll

Business Owner, Draftsman

Leonard Pond "Tony" Carroll, 72, who as a draftsman drew many of the plats for subdivisions and roads in developing Northern Virginia, died of cardiac arrest Jan. 14 at McGuire Hospital in Richmond.

Mr. Carroll, who owned Engineering Surveys Co. in Rochelle, Va., performed civil engineering drafting for Fairfax County when the area was beginning to grow.

As a draftsman, he came to disdain what he perceived as the indistinguishable line weights and artless lettering of computer-assisted drafting. He continued until recently to draw with hawkquill, ruling and lettering pens in India ink dipped from a 55-year-old inkwell.

Mr. Carroll was born in Ettrick, Va., and lived briefly during World War II at the Edgewood Arsenal in Maryland, where he had to carry a gas mask to school. He graduated from Washington-Lee High School in Arlington, where he began drafting for Arlington County during his junior year.

After the Korean War, he attended Emory & Henry College. He returned to drafting with Fairfax and later with Arthur Hunsburger and Carroll-Kim Associates. In the early 1960s, he sold industrial fans for the Hoddinott Co. of Washington.

In the late 1960s, Mr. Carroll and Leland D. Eisenhower formed Eisenhower-Carroll Inc., and 10 years later, Mr. Carroll and William D. Toney started Annandale Balancing Co., one of the region's first independent testing and balancing companies.

Mr. Carroll went on to establish National Balancing Co. and finally Engineering Surveys Co. in Rochelle, where he continued to do work in the Washington area until his death.

Among his last jobs were the design of specialized heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems for government facilities and the development of an unmanned aerial vehicle with aeronautical designer John B. Hunton.

Mr. Carroll lived in Arlington and Annandale and on his boat on the Occoquan River before moving five years ago to Madison.

He was a longtime coach of youth baseball, football and soccer teams and a lifelong Washington Redskins fan.

His marriage to Elizabeth Turner ended in divorce.

Survivors include two children, Amanda Davis of Aliso Viejo, Calif., and Michael Carroll of Madison County, Va.

James C. Knighton

Certified Public Accountant

James C. Knighton, 42, a certified public accountant with the Bethesda CPA firm of McGladrey and Pullen, died Jan. 21 at St. Agnes Hospital in Baltimore of complications from lung cancer. He was a resident of Catonsville, Md.

Mr. Knighton was born in Baltimore and graduated in 1980 from Mount St. Joseph High School in Baltimore, where he was a member of the National Honor Society. He received his undergraduate degree from Mount St. Mary's College in Emmitsburg, Md., in 1984. Shortly thereafter, he joined the Baltimore firm of C.W. Amos & Co., which became McGladrey and Pullen.

He was an avid runner and shared his enthusiasm for sports with his family.

Survivors include his wife of 20 years, Michele D. Knighton of Catonsville; a daughter, Gabby, and three sons, Kyle, Joseph and Brooks, all of Catonsville; his mother, Nary G. Knighton of Catonsville; two brothers, Mark J. Knighton of Baltimore and Phillip M. Knighton of Baltimore; and a sister, Nancy K. Greer of Ellicott City.

Elbert O. Schlotzhauer

Agricultural Adviser

Elbert O. Schlotzhauer, 98, an official with the Department of Agriculture, died Jan. 23 at Washington Hospital Center of pneumonia. He lived in Fort Washington.

Mr. Schlotzhauer, who began his career with the USDA as an agricultural statistician, spent about 10 years as an adviser attached to the U.S. Agency for International Development or to the United Nations. He had extended stays in Guatemala, Argentina, El Salvador, Ecuador and Pakistan, training workers in agricultural management. He was fluent in Spanish.

He joined the Agriculture Department in 1933 in his native Arizona. After working in New Mexico and Texas, he came to Washington in 1942. He retired from the USDA in 1966.

Mr. Schlotzhauer was born in Clifton, Ariz., and grew up in Douglas, Ariz., near the Mexican border. As a boy, he witnessed a gun battle in which Pancho Villa participated.

He attended the University of Southern California for one year and graduated from the University of Arizona. He worked in his youth repairing bicycles and as a cook for the Arizona National Guard. As a college student, he cooked for an archaeological dig and worked on a newspaper, the Tombstone Epitaph.

He lived in Bethesda from 1942 to 1966, when he moved to Fort Washington.

A lifelong conservationist, Mr. Schlotzhauer owned a plot in Charles County on which he planted loblolly pines to preserve as wilderness. He enjoyed cooking, gardening and nature. Bald eagles often perched in his front yard in Fort Washington.

He was active in neighborhood associations, Toastmasters International and the Masons. His hobbies included woodworking, and he was particularly known for making gavels and rolling pins. He was a member of the International Wood Collectors Society.

He was fascinated with mechanical objects and, in his teens, built his first car from spare Model T parts. He traveled widely and had visited England earlier this month.

His wife of 66 years, Virginia Hughes Schlotzhauer, died in 2002.

Survivors include three daughters, Carol Hinds of Takoma Park, Jean Sumner of Riner, Va., and Jude Schlotzhauer of Richmond; five grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Mary Schmidt Ponow

Executive Secretary

Mary Schmidt Ponow, 85, a former congressional executive secretary, died of congestive heart failure Jan. 21 at Countryside Manor nursing home in Stokesdale, N.C.

She was born in Melrose, Minn., and was educated in Minnesota and North Dakota. She worked for the federal government in civil service jobs in Denver, Colorado and Omaha.

By 1946, she was in Washington working for the War Assets Administration, where she met her future husband and married in 1949. She also worked on the staff of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs as an executive secretary to Rep. Edith Nourse Rogers (R-Mass.). She retired in 1979.

She and her husband moved to Seminole, Fla., and lived there until 1993. They then moved to Stokesdale.

Her husband, Dell Ponow Sr., died in 1999.

Survivors include six children, Fred Ponow and Chris Bacon, both of Madison, N.C., Dell Ponow Jr. of Dunedin, Fla., Gary Ponow of Darnestown, Dora Ponow of Gaithersburg and Ellen Shemo of Mayodan, N.C.; two brothers; two sisters; and four grandchildren.