David Goewey, a partner at the Venable law firm in Washington, died Dec. 29 at Capital Caring hospice in Arlington County. He was 51.

The cause was lung cancer, said his sister Susan Goewey, who said her brother was a nonsmoker.

Mr. Goewey joined Venable in 1987 and specialized in commercial and appellate litigation and class-action defense. He arbitrated contract disputes and handled legal proceedings for financial institutions and government contractors.

David William Goewey was born in Oxon Hill, Md., and grew up in Falls Church, Va., where he was a 1980 graduate of J.E.B. Stuart High School. He was editor in chief of his high school newspaper and lettered in football, basketball and baseball.

He graduated in 1984 from the University of Virginia, where he majored in political science and economics. He was a member of the Pi Kappa Phi fraternity.

He was a 1987 law school graduate of the College of William & Mary in Williamsburg and was an editor of the law review.

Mr. Goewey was a resident of Vienna, Va., where he was a member of the Episcopal Church of the Holy Comforter. He ran in marathons, played in an adult soccer league and enjoyed photography.

Survivors include his wife of 26 years, Sarah Maddocks Goewey, and their three children, Jack Goewey, Claire Goewey and Sophie Goewey, all of Vienna; and two sisters, Catherine Dalton of Lynchburg, Va., and Susan Goewey of Vienna.

— Matt Schudel