Correction: An earlier version of the obituary for newspaper columnist Suzanne J. “Suzi” Gookin incorrectly reported a daughter’s first name. She is Liza Hodskins, not Lisa Hodskins. This version has been updated.

Obituaries of residents from Washington, Maryland and Northern Virginia

Herman R. Belferman, analyst, translator

Herman R. Belferman, 93, a CIA analyst and translator who then worked at a Naval intelligence support center in Alexandria from 1972 to 1982, died March 17 at his home in Bethesda, Md. The cause was cancer, said a son, John Belferman.

Mr. Belferman, a New York native and Army veteran of World War II, spoke French, Spanish, Italian, Arabic and Swahili. He worked at the CIA from 1952 to 1971. He was a member of Congregation Beth El, a Conservative synagogue in Bethesda.

Suzanne J. “Suzi” Gookin, newspaper columnist

Suzanne J. “Suzi” Gookin, 89, a former columnist for the Washington Examiner and Georgetowner, died Feb. 14 at an assisted-living center in Georgetown. The cause was attributed to senescence, or aging, said her daughter, Liza Hodskins.

Ms. Gookin, who lived in Washington, was born Suzanne Johnston Causey in Baltimore. She wrote features, theater reviews and an advice column for the Washington Examiner, a short-lived newspaper published in the late 1960s. Later, she wrote the social column “Ear, Eyes, Nose and Throat” for the Georgetowner newspaper in the 1970s and 1980s. As a freelance writer, she contributed articles to The Washington Post.

Theodore W. Libbey Sr.,
Bell Atlantic executive

Theodore W. Libbey Sr., 87, who retired from Bell Atlantic Corp. as the assistant vice president of marketing in 1985, died Feb. 27 at a hospital in Washington. The cause was complications from a 2013 spinal surgery, said his wife, Barbara Ann Libbey.

Mr. Libbey, a native Washingtonian and resident of Chevy Chase, enlisted at 17 in the Navy and was a veteran of World War II and the Korean War. He worked 39 years with Bell Atlantic and its predecessors. He was past president and served on the board of the Citizens Association of Kenwood in Chevy Chase and helped develop the Yale University music library.

J. Horace Heafner,
FBI forensic artist

J. Horace Heafner, 85, a forensic artist who retired from the FBI as unit chief of the special projects division, died March 13 at a nursing home in Waynesboro, Va. The cause was dementia, said a granddaughter, Ashleigh McFarlin.

Mr. Heafner, a native of Charlotte, worked for the FBI from 1945 to 1985, became a leading expert in the preparation of composite drawings to solve crimes and helped create the FBI forensic school at Quantico, Va. He then spent several years with the Alexandria-based National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, where he developed a computer program capable of artistic age progression, used in the search for missing children. He moved to Waynesboro from Fairfax City in 1996.

Donald E. Goldstone,
HHS executive

Donald E. Goldstone, 77, a member of the federal Senior Executive Service who retired in 2004 as director of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s office of applied studies, died March 1 at a hospital in Washington. The cause was cancer, said his wife, Martha “Marti” Goldstone.

Mr. Goldstone, a Baltimore native, served in the Peace Corps before settling in the Washington area in 1970. He spent much of his career in federal health policy administration, working with what became the Department of Health and Human Services. He worked on expanding surveys and other programs that provide critical data on substance use and abuse in the United States, his wife said. He was a District resident.

Ellen S. Stover,
NIMH division director

Ellen S. Stover, 63, a National Institute of Mental Health division director for more than three decades, died March 16 at an assisted-living center in Rockville, Md. The cause was astrocytoma, a form of brain cancer, said her daughter, Elena Stover.

Dr. Stover, a Bethesda resident, was born Ellen Simon in Brooklyn. She was the director of NIMH’s AIDS research division for 24 years and director of the Mental Disorders, Behavioral Research and AIDS division from 2007 to 2010. Most recently, she was a collaborator in NIMH’s Office of Behavioral and Social Sciences Research. She focused her research on the behavioral and psychological factors contributing to HIV and AIDS transmission and developed research programs on schizophrenia. She received the Senior Executive Service’s Presidential Meritorious Executive award.

Caroline V. Meirs,
USIA, FEMA officer

Caroline V. Meirs, 69, a former U.S. Information Agency public affairs officer who later worked as a Federal Emergency Management Agency spokeswoman, died Feb. 28 at a hospital in Rochester, N.Y. The cause was salivary gland cancer, said a niece, Mary Anne Morgan.

Ms. Meirs, an Alexandria resident, was born in Brooklyn. She joined USIA in 1968, and her early postings took her to Central America, South America, Africa and Europe. She became deputy director of USIA’s Office of International Visitors and then worked at FEMA from 1997 to 2009. She was fluent in six languages and twice served as the editorial board chairman of the Foreign Service Journal, an American Foreign Service Association publication.

Barbara J. Williams


Barbara J. Williams, 92, an Alexandria homemaker who was active in volunteer groups and did service work abroad, died March 9 at a rehabilitation center in Alexandria. The cause was pulmonary failure, said a daughter-in-law, Susan Williams.

Mrs. Williams, who was born Barbara Jean Davis in Detroit, was a high school administrative assistant in New Canaan, Conn., before moving to Alexandria in 1977. She was a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines and volunteered with the International Executive Service Corps in Bogota, Colombia, in the early 1980s. She earned a pilot’s license as a young woman.

Lee E. Shipman,
site and architectural planner

Lee E. Shipman, 91, a freelance site and architectural planner for organizations including Marriott International, Metro and the Institute of Modern Procedures, died March 8 at a hospital in Washington. She had pulmonary hypertension, said a daughter, Dena Kirkland.

Mrs. Shipman, a Bethesda resident, was born Lee Ella Warren Spanogle in Washington and raised in Chevy Chase. Her mother was the novelist Lella Warren. Mrs. Shipman, who did freelance architectural work for more than six decades, was a member of the Montgomery County Civic Federation and the Potomac, Baltimore and Richmond bottle collectors clubs. A number of bottles from her collection were featured in a Washington Post Magazine story in February.

Charles O. Olsen,
IMF library director

Charles O. Olsen, 92, the library director of the International Monetary Fund for 19 years before his retirement in 1979, died March 15 at his home in Washington. He had Alzheimer’s disease, said a daughter, Tisa Olsen.

Mr. Olsen was born in Greenville, S.C. He worked as a librarian at the Library of Congress for six years before joining the International Monetary Fund. After his IMF retirement, he dedicated his time to volunteering at libraries, food banks, homeless shelters and soup kitchens in the District. He raised funds to renovate St. Timothy Catholic Church in Walkersville, Md., and his memberships included Health Care for the Homeless, a nonprofit group.

— From staff reports