In Memoriam | 2022

Questions concerning employee deaths should be directed to the Office of Casualty Assistance at (202) 736-4302. Inquiries concerning deaths of retired employees should be directed to the Office of Retirement at (202) 261-8960. For specific questions on submitting an obituary, please contact Amanda McCarthy at mccarthyar@state.gov.


January 2022

Milburn “Gil” Garland Butler, 85, died Oct. 10, in Waldorf, Md. After a brief stint in the U.S. Army, Butler attended college in Colorado, then transferred to the University of Florida. After he graduated, Butler worked as a disc jockey eventually landing in roles in radio and television, first in Tampa, Fla., then Detroit, Mich., and finally in Washington where he served as a White House correspondent for the local CBS affiliate. In 1978, Butler joined the United States Information Agency’s Voice of America where he spent three decades covering 68 countries and serving abroad in Cairo, Beirut, Beijing, London, as well as in Washington. In retirement, Butler spent many years on a small horse farm in Accokeek, Md., tending to the farm, gardening, and spending time with his grandchildren. He enjoyed reading, and was a passionate follower of government and politics. He is survived by his wife, Judith; three children, John, Peter, and Melinda; six grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Rachel Leigh Jordan, 47, died Sept. 21, in Durham, N.C. Jordan attended school in Washington prior to joining the Department of State. She served for 20 years, retiring in 2011 from her position in the Bureau of Consular Affairs. Jordan relocated to Fayetteville, N.C. and enjoyed event planning, home décor, and acquiring unique items. Jordan is survived by her parents, John Jr., and Gloria; two children, Briana and Michael; a sister, Cecile; many aunts, including Shirley (fellow Department employee); two nieces; two god-sisters; and many uncles and cousins. 

Richard Lee Marx, 87, died Oct. 16, in Newnan, Ga. Upon graduation from University of Colorado, Marx enlisted in the U.S. Army. After serving a tour in Korea, he joined the Foreign Service and worked in New York City and Panama. He became a diplomatic courier in November 1963, and he served at posts in Frankfurt, Manila, Panama, Washington, and Bangkok. He retired in 1992. In retirement he enjoyed traveling, and outdoor work. He is survived by his wife of nearly 54 years, Joanne (a retired Foreign Service member), and a daughter, Joanna.

Dorothy Robins Mowry, 99, died July 6, in St. Michaels, Md. Mowry received a B.A. from the College of Wooster, and M.A. from Columbia University, and a Ph.D. from New York University. She joined the United States Information Agency in 1963, and served for almost 20 years in various roles including counselor, first secretary and reserve officer; policy officer/acting director for the Office of North African, Near Eastern, and South Asian Affairs; country officer for India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka; and program manager for U.S. Political and Social Processes Information Center Services. She also served as a cultural attaché in Tehran, and cultural programs officer in Tokyo. She retired in 1984, and was involved with the Talbot River Protection Association, St. Michaels Community Center Board, Riverview Garden Club, and supported youth sailing programs at the Miles River Yacht Club. Mowry was predeceased by her husband, David, and a daughter, Sarah. She is survived by two children, Lynn and Thomas; six grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren, a niece, and a nephew.

Thomas “Tom” J. Wallis, 58, died May 1, in Miami, Fla. Wallis attended Virginia Tech, and the National Defense Intelligence College. He obtained the rank of Staff Sergeant for his service in the U.S. Army, and served in Iraq. Wallis joined the Foreign Service in 2001 as a consular officer and served at posts in Jamaica, Germany, Belize, Malawi, and Peru. He is survived by his wife, Monica; his parents; and three brothers.

Connie Rae Helen Poli, 77, died Oct. 31, in Orlando, Fla. After graduating from high school, Poli began working for 3M and trained as a missionary where she was assigned a position in Seoul in the early 1970s. She then moved back to the U.S., where she studied nursing, eventually moving to Washington and joining the staff of Vice President Walter Mondale. She later moved to Honolulu where she finished her studies at the University of Hawaii in 1982. In 1986, she joined the Department of State serving in Nassau, and was quickly reassigned to Santiago. During her career, she served at posts in Panama, Bonn, Hanoi, Amman, Bangkok, Washington, and Brussels. She retired and moved to Ajijic, Mexico, and made frequent trips to Thailand and Southeast Asia during the winter months. In 2015, she and her husband moved to Arizona, and finally settled in Saint Cloud, Fla. She enjoyed yoga, meditation, reading, line dancing, walking, and traveling. Poli is survived by her husband of 35 years, Charles.

Brian William Wilson, 62, died June 12, in Fairfax, Va. After receiving a bachelor’s degree from Western Washington University in 1983, Wilson taught middle school English and drama. He joined the Foreign Service in 1985 and served in London, Belfast, Ciudad Juárez, Guatemala, and San Jose, as well as assignments in Washington. He served in the senior Foreign Service in the Bureau of Neareaster and Asian Affairs Executive Office, Bureau of Global Talent Management’s Office of Career Development and Assignments, director of Entry Level Career Development, and most recently as the executive director for the Bureau of European and Eurasian Affairs and Bureau of International Organization Affairs. Wilson enjoyed hiking, cycling, golfing, kayaking, and was an active community volunteer. He is survived by his wife, Julia; and two children, Peter and Grace.


Questions concerning employee deaths should be directed to the Office of Casualty Assistance at (202) 736-4302. Inquiries concerning deaths of retired employees should be directed to the Office of Retirement at (202) 261-8960. For specific questions on submitting an obituary, please contact Amanda McCarthy at mccarthyar@state.gov.

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