Ramona Frances Blunt Forbes
Ramona Frances Blunt Forbes, 91, a longtime educator who was the founding director of the voice department at the National Cathedral School for Girls, died July 31 at the Sunrise Assisted Living facility in Washington. She had Alzheimer's disease.
Mrs. Forbes, an artist and former government graphics specialist, oversaw the National Cathedral School for Girls' voice department for three decades until retiring in 1984.
For more than a half-century, she offered private voice, piano and organ lessons. She taught Queen Noor and former first-family members Julie Nixon Eisenhower and Lynda Johnson Robb when they were children.
Her students' recitals at the old Hillendale estate in Georgetown became much-anticipated events, said Mrs. Forbes' son Douglas, director of Lower School Music at Roland Park Country School in Baltimore.
A performer herself, Mrs. Forbes sang in a number of choirs in Washington. She performed in nearly every concert of the Cathedral Choral Society for 56 years and served in various administrative positions, including assistant treasurer and audition manager.
She was a founder of the Washington Opera Society Chorus and a soloist, assistant organist and choirmaster at St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Washington.
Mrs. Forbes was born in Denver and graduated from the University of Colorado. She taught at a high school in Colorado, then at Endicott College in Beverly, Mass., before moving to Washington during World War II to work as a calligrapher at the Selective Service.
She then worked at Sidwell Friends School as its upper-school music director before joining the faculty of the National Cathedral School for Girls in 1954.
She was a member of All Saints' Episcopal Church in Chevy Chase, Daughters of the American Revolution, National Association of Teachers of Singing and the Friday Morning Music Club.
Her husband, Charles Sidney Forbes, died in 1983; they were married for 33 years.
In addition to her son, of Baltimore, survivors include a daughter, Margaret Forbes Mendoza of Redondo Beach, Calif.; a stepson, Charles Sidney Forbes Jr. of Union Bridge, Md.; and five grandchildren.
Camilla Marvin, 92, a former freelance writer and volunteer at the Washington Animal Rescue League, died July 12 at the Chevy Chase House. The cause of death was reported as adult failure to thrive.
She was born in Evanston, Ill., and grew up in Montclair, N.J., New York and New Canaan, Conn. She attended Vassar College in Poughkeepsie, N.Y.
She married in 1933 and lived with her husband, Sosthenes Behn, in Romania, Chile, Argentina and Mexico. That marriage ended in divorce.
During World War II, she moved to Washington, where she worked as a secretary for Nelson A. Rockefeller. She later worked as a freelance writer for trade magazines until the early 1960s.
In recent years, she kept a house in Washington and spent part of every summer and fall in Dublin, N.H.
Her marriage to Eric Weinmann ended in divorce.
Survivors include two children from the second marriage, Gail Weinmann of Chevy Chase and Eden Weinmann of Bolinas, Calif.; and a granddaughter.
Audrey King Peery
Audrey King Peery, 85, a self-employed interior designer who was an advocate for the rights of visually impaired children, died Aug. 4 at the Casey House hospice.
Mrs. Peery had lived at the Asbury Methodist Village retirement community for the past 18 months and previously in Chevy Chase, where she ran an antiques and interior design business out of her home for about 45 years.
Her clients included some of Washington's most influential people in government, business and politics.
At the same time, she managed College Frocks clothing stores in Opelika, Ala., and New Orleans.
Mrs. Peery was a native of New Orleans. As a young woman, she worked as a model, appearing in newspapers and magazines. She studied art history at Arlington Hall prep school in Arlington and attended Newcomb College in New Orleans.
In the late 1950s, after her daughter lost her sight, Mrs. Peery became a proponent for the mainstreaming of disabled children in the public schools.
Mrs. Peery co-founded what is now Services for the Visually Impaired in Washington.
She was an active member of First Church of Christ Scientist in Chevy Chase and the National Society of Arts and Letters, of which she was a chapter and national president.
Her husband of 53 years, Richard Hartmann Peery, died in 2003.
Survivors include three daughters, Kathleen King Peery of Washington, Laura Lea Peery of Chevy Chase and Letty Peery McNulty of Huntingtown; and four grandchildren.
Stephen Shemelynec Sr.
Army Chief Warrant Officer
Stephen Shemelynec Sr., 84, a Pearl Harbor survivor and retired Army chief warrant officer who worked at Walter Reed Army Medical Center, died Aug. 8 of complications from liver and kidney diseases at Walter Reed in Washington. A longtime resident of Silver Spring, he had been living at the Knollwood retirement facility in the District since 2004.
Mr. Shemelynec was born in St. Michael, Pa., and joined the Army at age 17. He was in an artillery brigade when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor on Dec. 7, 1941. He served throughout Europe and the United States before retiring in 1964.
Afterward, he moved with his family to the Washington area. He started a second career at Walter Reed in the biomedical engineering division, working in medical maintenance. He retired in 1979.
He then started the Shemelynec Microscope Co. in the District. He sold the business in 1984.
Mr. Shemelynec was a member of the Pearl Harbor Association and St. Mark Eastern Orthodox Church in Bethesda.
Survivors included of his wife of 56 years, Mary Shemelynec of Washington; two children, Stephen Shemelynec Jr. of Indianapolis and Marlene Shemelynec of Gaithersburg; and two granddaughters.
Government Finance Officer
Nicholas Vartzikos, 73, a retired government finance officer and veteran yachtsman, died of cancer Aug. 4 at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore. He lived in Washington.
Mr. Vartzikos was born on the island of Samos, Greece, where in his later years he became something of a legend for his sailing prowess.
In 1947, he came to the United States with his family, who lived in Beloit, Wis., before settling in Washington in the mid-1950s.
He graduated from George Washington University and received a master's degree in business from American University.
He worked for 30 years for federal government agencies, including the National Science Foundation and the Department of Health and Human Services, from which he retired after 10 years in 1987.
One of his main interests was sailing. In 1992, he published a book, "Alone in the Atlantic," which documented a solo, nonstop transatlantic/Mediterranean crossing from the Chesapeake Bay to Samos on a 38-foot steel ketch. The book is in its second printing.
Survivors include his wife of eight years, Jan Campbell of Washington; two sisters; and a brother.
Steven Francis Nutwell
Steven Francis Nutwell, 54, a head carpenter with the Architect of the Capitol's Office, died Aug. 4 at Georgetown University Hospital of complications from open-heart surgery in June. He lived in Upper Marlboro.
Mr. Nutwell was born in Cheverly and raised in Deale. He graduated from Eastern High School in 1968 and soon after enlisted in the Navy, serving two tours of duty in Vietnam. He was on active duty from 1968 to 1972 and in the reserves from 1972 to 1974.
After his military service, he worked in construction for Clevenger Corp. in Beltsville for 17 years. He worked on numerous projects in the area, including the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the Hart Senate Office Building. He joined the Architect of the Capitol's Office in 1982 as a master carpenter and was extremely proud of his work there, his wife said.
Mr. Nutwell was a charter member of Deale Elks Lodge 2528 and a lifetime member of the Deale Volunteer Fire Department. He enjoyed reading about history, particularly the Civil War, researching family genealogy on the Internet, deep-sea fishing and carving decoys. He also enjoyed working in the yard.
His marriage to Janice Nutwell ended in divorce.
Survivors include his wife of four years, Linda Nutwell of Upper Marlboro; a daughter from his first marriage, Alaina Nutwell of Deale; his mother, Helen Nutwell of Deale; and three sisters, Lois Nutwell of Harwood, Wendy Nutwell of Deale and Lisa Isenberg of North Beach.
Peter Gnau Duffie
IBM Senior Consultant
Peter Gnau Duffie, 58, a longtime IBM employee, died Aug. 2 of cancer at Sibley Memorial Hospital. He had lived in Lovettsville for the past 18 years.
Mr. Duffie was born in Madrid of military parents and graduated from Falls Church High School in 1964. He attended the University of Oklahoma for a year and then returned to Northern Virginia to work for IBM. He was with the company for 39 years, working in various areas, including parts administration management, products scheduling and supply chain practice. He retired this year as a senior consultant.
Mr. Duffie was an active member of the Lovettsville Lions Club and served several terms as president and treasurer. He received the Melvin Jones Fellow Award in 2003 for his service to the community.
He was a longtime member of St. James Episcopal Church in Leesburg.
Survivors include his wife of 22 years, Jeanne Duffie of Lovettsville; two children, Rachel Duffie of Charlottesville and Lovettsville and Tim Duffie of St. Louis; two brothers; a sister; and two grandchildren.
Elizabeth Brandes Goldfaden
Psychiatric Social Worker
Elizabeth Brandes Goldfaden, 88, a former psychiatric social worker with the Veterans Administration, died of congestive heart failure Aug. 8 at the Coral Bay Skilled Nursing Center in Lake Worth, Fla. She was a longtime resident of the District before moving to Florida in 1987.
Mrs. Goldfaden was born in Ithaca, N.Y., and grew up in Washington, where she graduated from Sidwell Friends School.
She received a bachelor's degree from George Washington University in 1938 and a master's degree in social work from Catholic University in 1959.
She was director of the Prince George's County Adoption Service from 1948 to 1958, where she was responsible for placing hundreds of orphaned and abandoned children with families.
She became a psychiatric social worker with the Veterans Administration in 1958. She retired from the agency in 1979 as the chief administrator of a psychiatric social unit.
She was a member of Sigma Kappa sorority and Daughters of the American Revolution.
Survivors include her husband of 68 years, Benjamin Goldfaden of Wellington, Fla.; three children, David Goldfaden of Annapolis and Wellington, Victoria Emmert of Wellington and Sheri Levin of Olney; 10 grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.
Robert W. Ginnis
Army Lieutenant Colonel
Robert Walter Ginnis, 77, a retired Army lieutenant colonel who was also business manager of the University of Maryland's computer science center from the early 1970s until 1987, died Aug. 9 at his home in Germantown. He had bladder cancer.
Col. Ginnis served in the Army from 1947 to 1970, during which time he did work for the Army Security Agency, the National Security Agency and the Defense Intelligence Agency.
He was a native of Detroit. He received a bachelor's degree in military science from the University of Maryland during his Army career.
His avocations included photography and gardening.
A daughter, Marie C. Klein, died in 2000.
Survivors include his wife of 52 years, Constance Macdonald Ginnis of Germantown; four children, Joan C. Szabo of Fairfax County, Susan C. Jusnes of Fuquay-Varina, N.C., and Robert V. Ginnis and Jeffrey R. Ginnis, both of Germantown; and eight grandchildren.