Donald H. Pearlman


Donald H. Pearlman, 69, a Washington lawyer and former executive assistant to the secretary of energy and the interior during the Reagan administration, died of complications from lung cancer Aug. 13 at Washington Hospital Center. He was a Potomac resident.

Mr. Pearlman worked for Donald P. Hodel, his college roommate, for the six years that Hodel served in the Cabinet. He then joined the Patton Boggs law firm, where he represented coal, utility and railroad interests and specialized in global climate change matters.

He was born in Portland, Ore., graduated from Harvard University and received a law degree from Yale Law School in 1960. He clerked for a federal judge in Nevada, then became a senior partner in the Portland law firm of Keane, Harper, Pearlman & Copeland.

Survivors include his wife of 45 years, Shirley Block Pearlman of Potomac; two children, Bradley Pearlman of Seattle and Stephanie Mennitt of Bristow, in Prince William County; a brother; and six grandchildren.

Harry Abraham Sennett

Real Estate Developer

Harry Abraham Sennett, 91, a real estate developer and property manager and a partner in Sennett & Co., died of cancer Sept. 4 at his daughter's home in Potomac.

Mr. Sennett was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and received an accounting degree from City College. He moved to Washington when he was in his twenties and worked for Bonds Clothing, D.J. Kaufman Inc. and Raleigh's apparel stores. He then joined the D.C. police and served as a patrolman for seven years.

After leaving the police force, he worked in the insurance department of Arcade Pontiac (later named Jack Blank Pontiac) and became general manager. He left in 1960 to form Sennett & Co., a real estate development and management firm, with his wife in Washington.

Mr. Sennett and his wife managed several properties in Washington, including Queens Manor Gardens and Mistletoe Gardens apartments and were instrumental in the development of North Portal Estates on 16th Street NW and the Huntington Apartments on Connecticut Avenue NW.

He belonged to Indian Spring Country Club in Silver Spring, and 51 years ago was one of the founders of Norbeck Country Club in Rockville, where he served as treasurer and a member of the board for many years.

He had been financial secretary of Amity Club of Washington, a charitable organization. He also had been a member of Tifereth Israel Congregation and more recently of Washington Hebrew Congregation.

He lived in the Washington area, in the District and Rockville, until moving to Boca Raton, Fla., about 15 years ago, where he could enjoy golf, bridge and gin games.

His wife of 48 years, Clara Berenter Sennett, died in 1987.

Survivors include his daughter, Linda Sennett Newman of Potomac; his companion, Norma Jean Gorden of Rockville; three grandchildren; and one great-grandson.

Mary Duer Brown

Watercolor Artist

Mary Duer Brown, 74, a landscape watercolorist who exhibited nationally through her membership in watercolor societies, died Sept. 14 at her home in Bethesda. She had breast cancer.

Mrs. Brown was born in New York and raised in Cold Spring Harbor, N.Y. Her parents also had homes in Leesburg and Georgetown when she was growing up.

She was a graduate of the Foxcroft School in Middleburg and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

In the early 1960s, she settled in the Washington area, where she was a member of the Sulgrave Club. She painted for the Coast Guard Art Program.

Survivors include her husband, Stanley N. Brown Jr. of Bethesda; three children, Starr Sears of Washington and Catherine "Kitty" Stanton and Henry Brown, both of New York; a brother; and five grandchildren.

Frederick Oakley Beattie III

Foreign Service Officer

Frederick Oakley Beattie III, 83, a retired Foreign Service officer and an Oakton bookstore manager, died of respiratory failure after a heart attack Sept. 12 at Inova Fairfax Hospital. He had been a Vienna resident since 1952.

Mr. Beattie, a native of Warwick, N.Y., graduated from the State University of New York in Buffalo and attended the University of Chicago before enlisting in the Navy during World War II. He was a lieutenant junior grade, serving on tank landing ships in England, and participated in Exercise Tiger, a pre-D-Day exercise that went badly awry. The military said 749 died during the April 1944 operation, after German torpedo boats attacked the LSTs.

After recuperating from his wounds, Mr. Beattie was assigned to another ship and served in the Normandy invasion. After the war, he returned to his studies at the University of Chicago, where he received a master's degree in international relations in 1948. He did further postgraduate work there until 1952, when he joined the State Department.

Mr. Beattie first was assigned to Munich as a consular officer and then became a member of the newly formed Chinese language school that was designed to prepare others for service in the Far East. He also served tours in Taiwan, Hong Kong, Burma and Jamaica. He retired from the government in 1974.

He had a second career of 17 years at Crown Books, managing the store in Oakton.

Survivors include his wife of 58 years, Judith Beattie of Vienna; four children, Anne Kerr of Castleton, Va., Judith Durham of Reston, Brian Beattie of Portland, Ore., and Eric Beattie of Culpeper; seven grandchildren; and a great-grandchild.

Candice Cook Levitt

NSA Software Engineer

Candice Cook Levitt, 48, a senior software engineer with the National Security Agency, died of metastatic breast cancer Sept. 2 at the Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care in Towson, Md. She was a longtime resident of Columbia before moving to Clarksville in April.

Mrs. Levitt, known by her family and friends as Candy, was born in Hinsdale, Ill., and grew up in Macon, Ga. She received a degree in mathematics from Berry College in Georgia.

After college, she joined the NSA. During her 26-year career, she contributed to the development of numerous computer programs vital to national security.

After learning in 1997 that she had breast cancer, Mrs. Levitt maintained her upbeat spirit and generous personality, her husband said. Two years ago, when her daughter was hospitalized for a month, she rushed from her own chemotherapy treatments to her daughter's hospital room and spent nights sleeping on the floor there.

Mrs. Levitt loved such crafts as quilting and origami. She contributed her quilting skills to the creation of a reproduction of a Civil War slave quilt, which is on display at the National Cryptologic Museum at Fort Meade.

Last year, Mrs. Levitt walked on a glacier in Alaska -- just days before she became too ill to stand.

Mrs. Levitt decided to posthumously donate tissue cells to a new research program, the Johns Hopkins Hospital Breast Cancer Rapid Medical Donation Program. Researchers will genetically study her cancer cells in the hope of one day creating new drugs that can prevent or cure such aggressive forms of the cancer as the one that took her life.

Survivors include her husband of 17 years, Lore Levitt of Clarksville; a daughter, Beth Levitt of Clarksville; a sister; two brothers; her parents, Hugh and Frances Cook of Sumter, S.C.; and a grandmother, Mary Cook of Boyton Beach, Fla.

Alessandra del Russo

Law Professor

Alessandra Luini del Russo, 88, a former law professor at Howard University and George Washington University, died Sept. 2 at a hospice in Jupiter, Fla. She had Alzheimer's disease.

Dr. del Russo taught law at Howard University from 1961 through 1981 and at George Washington University from 1976 through 1980.

She was born in Milan and received a degree in history from the Royal University of Milan. She obtained her doctor of laws degree from the University of Pavia in 1941. She married while serving as legal adviser to the Allied military government in Milan, then immigrated to the United States in 1948. Dr. del Russo received a master's degree in comparative law from George Washington University.

She practiced law briefly in Maryland, then became a teacher. After she and her husband retired to Florida in 1977, she became an adjunct professor at Stetson University College of Law in St. Petersburg, Fla., and also continued teaching here for a while.

Her husband, Carl del Russo, died in March.

Survivors include two sons, Carl del Russo of Orlando and Alexander del Russo of Wellington, Fla.; and three grandsons.

Candice Levitt worked for the NSA for 26 years.