Born in Havana, Cuba, de la Fe was first appointed by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors in 2001 and he was one of the architects behind bringing Metro rail to the Dulles Corridor. He grew up in Miami and became a U.S. citizen in 1958.
He worked for NASA in the 1960s and married Sarah Anne Prendergast in 1964. From 1969 to 1971, he created the Illinois State Bureau of the Budget and later established the Special Action Office for Drug Abuse Prevention.
The de la Fe family moved to Reston in 1971 and de la Fe lived in the community for 47 years. He served on several local boards and committees, including Reston Association’s Board of Directors, Reston Soccer and Reston Interfaith, now known as Cornerstones. He was also chairman of the Fairfax County Park Authority.
His family issued the following statement following his death:
[We] are forever grateful that our parents chose to not only settle in Reston, but to fully embrace the vision for what the community could be – the hard work it would take to realize that vision. We learned the importance of service and a strong community. And, most importantly, we learned about family. Family you are born to and family you choose. The connections and friendships made in regency square, Reston soccer, swim team and St. Thomas are relationships and friendships that continue to this day…
In lieu of flowers, the family is asking individuals to send donations to the Fairfax County Park Foundation.
He is survived by his daughters Catherine and Mary, son-in-law Dionicio and grandchildren Megan, Caitlin, and Juan.
Photo via Adams Green
Public Meeting Tonight on Unfunded Transportation Projects — Fairfax County Department of Transportation officials are seeking public input on nearly 300 transportation projects that are vying for roughly $100 million in funding. Local residents can provide feedback on proposed projects at a public meeting tonight from 7-9 p.m. at the North County Governmental Center (1801 Cameron Glen Drive). The meeting will include a formal presentation about unfunded projects and a question-and-answer session. [Reston Now]
Be Alert for Deer on Roadways — Police are urging residents to be alert and aware of the potential for deer to dart into the road in front of their vehicles. About half of all deer-vehicle collisions occur during the months of October, November and December, they say. [Fairfax County Police Department]
County Rape Suspect Arrested in West Virginia — Eusebio Romero-Rivera, 48, is believed to have fled the state after a warrant was issued for his arrest on a charge of raping an adult family member in August. The U.S. Marshals Service says Romero-Rivera, a Salvadoran national, had previously been deported and had re-entered the country illegally. [The (Martinsburg, W.Va.) Journal]
Learn About Lyme Disease Tonight — The National Capital Lyme Disease Association will host a panel discussion on the topic tonight, 7:30-9:30 p.m., at South Lakes High School (11400 South Lakes Drive). [NatCapLyme]
Herndon Welcomes South Korean Guests — Herndon’s mayor and Town Council exchanged gifts, including a ceremonial Town Key, with the South Korean visitors, who were guests of Grandmaster H.K. Lee Academy of TaeKwonDo. [Connection Newspapers]
Local Military Veteran Dies in Texas — Carl Bolle, a 1977 graduate of Herndon High School, served 20 years in the U.S. Army and achieved the rank of sergeant first class. Among his medals, he earned the Meritorious Service Medal and the Army Commendation Medal. After retiring, he worked as a contractor in the computer intelligence area at Fort Hood for 16 years. [Temple Daily Telegram]
Weird Brothers Coffee (321 Sunset Park Drive, Herndon) has announced via social media that co-owner Kenny Olsen died unexpectedly Thursday.
My dear brother Kenneth Olsen passed away yesterday. Our family is distraught and still in shock. Kenny had the biggest…
Brothers Paul and Kenny Olsen founded the popular business as a mobile coffee bar before they opened their permanent location in Herndon in April. Paul told Connection Newspapers the next month about how close he and his brother were, leading to the name “Weird Brothers.”
“My brother and I, for our entire lives, have just always marched to the beat of a different drummer. It always turned out that when we were together, all these weird and strange things would happen. It just fit.”
Friends of the Weird Brothers have shared their condolences on social media.
Please help us support our friends at Weird Brothers Coffee, who supply Lake Anne Brew House with our amazing Nitro Cold…
Sorry to hear about your loss, sending condolences from The Frenchman team
— The Frenchman (@TheFrenchmanFT) August 4, 2017
A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the business as it copes with Kenny’s death.
A memorial service has been scheduled for Friday, Aug. 18 at Adams-Green Funeral Home (721 Elden St., Herndon).
Photo collage via Weird Brothers Coffee/Instagram
Actor Evan Helmuth, who lived in Reston until the age of 10, died July 18 in Los Angeles of complications from a stroke.
Helmuth, who attended Lake Anne Elementary School before his family moved to the Midwest, pursued a film career after graduating from Interlochen (Mich.) Arts Academy and from the University of Southern California’s School of Dramatic Arts. His credits included appearances in numerous popular films and television series.
The following information was provided by Helmuth’s family:
Evan Hershey Helmuth passed away in Los Angeles, California on July 18, 2017 of complications from a stroke. Born in 1977, Evan lived in Reston, Virginia until age 10, when he moved with his family to Ames, Iowa. For many summers, he attended the Interlochen Arts Camp in northern Michigan, followed by three years of high school at the year-round Interlochen Arts Academy. He graduated from the Academy in 1995 as a theater major, receiving the school’s highest award for an individual arts graduate. He further pursued his dramatic studies at the University of Southern California School of Dramatic Arts, where he received numerous awards and graduated in 1999 with the prestigious Jack Nicholson Award for outstanding actor. He lived in Los Angeles since that time.
Helmuth’s film credits include the Farrelly Brothers’ Fever Pitch, where he appeared opposite Jimmy Fallon and Drew Barrymore as Fallon’s Red Sox-loving sidekick Troy; William Brent Bell’s 2012 horror movie The Devil Inside as Father David; and Joshua Michael Stern’s 2013 Steve Jobs biopic Jobs starring Ashton Kutcher. His TV credits spanned the likes of ABC’s Alias, CBS’ NCIS, Fox’s Bones, TNT’s Rizzoli & Isles and more recently CBS’ comedic drama Battle Creek.
Evan is remembered as a warm, kind, generous, and talented person by family and friends. He is survived by his sister, Erika Fairchild Helmuth Saunders of Hershey, PA; his stepmother, Paula Forrest of Ames, IA; and his beloved dog Sasha. He was preceded in death by his father John William Helmuth and his mother Kerry O’Brien Helmuth. Memorial contributions can be sent in Evan’s name to the University of Southern California School of Dramatic Arts and the Interlochen Center for the Arts, Theatre Division.
Former Assistant Principal Passes Away — Bill Weaver, a longtime assistant principal at South Lakes and Herndon high schools, died last week at the age of 83. Weaver was also a former football coach at George Mason and James Madison high schools. [Southern Maryland Online]
Community Meeting Tonight on Temporary Fire Station — Residents are invited to come to the North County Governmental Center (1801 Cameron Glen Drive) tonight at 7 p.m. to learn about the county’s plan for Reston’s temporary fire station, and to share their thoughts. [Reston Now]
County Fire Welcomes New Recruits — After 28 weeks of training, new members of Fairfax County Fire and Rescue graduated from training Friday evening. Some began work the next morning, while others started on the job today. [Fairfax County Fire and Rescue]
Police: Watch for Signs of Gang Activity — The Fairfax County Police Department says certain types of graffiti can be an indicator of increased gang presence in a community. In addition, they are sharing tips for parents to look for in kids who may be at risk. [WTOP]
Snow Forecast Disappoints — Snow that was predicted to fall overnight didn’t amount to much of anything in Fairfax County, but it will remain windy and cold today. Warmth is expected to return soon, with 60s or even low 70s possible again Sunday. [Capital Weather Gang]
Three Divas Readying for Upcoming Show — Reston’s three divas (Beverly Cosham, Menda Ahart and Felicia Kessel-Crawley) will perform Friday, Feb. 17 at Reston Community Center, Lake Anne. Though the concert is free, seating is limited and reservations are encouraged. [Reston Museum]
Notable Death: Ralph Edward Groening — Groening, a longtime Reston resident, died earlier this week at the age of 97. Groening was a veteran of World War II and the Korean War, and worked for the U.S. Department of Agriculture for several decades. [Reston Patch]
William “Bill” Young was born in Philadelphia, PA on July 6, 1942. He was the son of William A. Young, Jr. and Lenora Stephens Young. Bill graduated from Central High School in 1960.
He went on to Bates College in Lewiston, ME graduating with his Bachelor’s Degree in Economics in 1964. He then moved to New York to attend Columbia University, earning his MBA in 1966. Bill then started his own company, Boone, Young and Associates with another Bates College graduate, David Boone.
Bill moved to Reston in 1974 to work for the Federal Government in the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Following his work with OMB he worked for BDM, EDS and other Washington, DC area consulting companies. His last position was with the Fairfax County Office of Economic Development.
Bill was an active member and Deacon of the United Christian Parish, serving on many of their boards during his 35-plus years living in Reston. He became very active with their prison ministry and then with Kairos Prison Ministry International.
Following his retirement to Millsboro, DE, near Rehoboth Beach, he joined Epworth United Methodist Church and again became an active member starting a Kairos Prison Ministry program there, as well.
Bill was always involved in numerous volunteer organizations that attempted to better the lives of others. He was an active member of the Bates College Alumni Association, the Advisory Board of the Business School at Shenandoah University and an advisor for student life at George Mason University. He later became a member of the Board of Directors of the National Development Council.
Bill is survived by his wife, Diana Drury Philbrick Young; daughter Stephanie Young Davidson (Tom Davidson) of San Diego, CA; son Howard S. Young, MD of Annapolis, MD; son William H. Young (GJ Young) of Ashburn, VA; stepdaughters Cynthia Gaulin of Chantilly, VA, Heidi Philbrick Buxton of Nashua, NH, Stephanie Philbrick Provost of Goffstown, NH; and stepson Wesley Philbrick of Litchfield, NH; sister Stephanie Young Abbott (Ed Abbott) of Reston; grandchildren Logan and Miles Young, Courtney and Sydney Young, Grace Davidson and step-grandchildren Curtis and Ashley Buxton, Noah Benoit and Victor Philbrick.
A celebration of Bill’s life was held Oct. 8 at Epworth United Methodist Church in Rehoboth Beach, DE.
A second celebration of Bill’s life will be held Oct. 22 at United Christian Parish, 11508 North Shore Drive, Reston, VA 20190.
Visitation will begin at 10:00 am with the service following at 11:00 am. Distribution of ashes in the Memorial Garden and a reception will follow the service at the church.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Epworth United Methodist Church and United Christian Parish.
Dr. Farrell, originally from Clarksburg, W. Va., was a 1955 graduate of Campion Jesuit High School, a Jesuit boarding school for boys in Prairie du Chien, Wis. He was a 1959 graduate of the University of Notre Dame.
Dr. Farrell completed his medical training in 1965 after his internship at Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, and residency at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh.
After completing his medical training Dr. Farrell served in the U.S. Navy Medical Corps at the U. S. Naval Hospital, Pediatrics, Camp Lejeune, N.C. In 1968-69, he served in Vietnam pacification program as a Navy pediatric physician advisor II corps, Milphap Team N-4 in Nha Trang and Saigon treating plaque, malaria and tuberculosis.
After being discharged in 1969, he continued to serve in the U. S. Navy Reserves receiving an honorable discharge as Lieutenant Commander April 1975. He received the National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal and Vietnam Campaign Medal.
After his military service, Dr. Farrell moved to Reston in 1971, establishing Farrell Pediatrics in Hunters Woods Village Center.
In 1985, he moved his practice to Sunset Hills Professional Center. The practice still bears his name and has provided care to thousands of young patients in Northern Virginia.
“Dr. Farrell was such a good clinician that in 1989, when my daughter was diagnosed with leukemia, he knew the diagnosis before the blood test came back,” said Reston resident John Farrell, a lawyer who often joked with the doctor because the two shared the same name.
Dr. Farrell was preceded in death by his father, Dr. Marcus E. Farrell and his mother, Mae Ann (Hurray) Farrell. His first wife, Carol (Aston) Farrell, died in November 2015 in Raleigh, NC.
He is survived by his wife Nancy; brother Marcus E. Farrell Jr. (wife Ellen); son John David Farrell Jr. (wife Kerry and grandchildren Victor, Patrick and David); Laura Farrell Page (husband Jeff and grandchildren, Carter, Natalie and Logan); Michael Farrell and Julene Farrell; and stepdaughter Cynthia Connell (husband Paul and grandchildren Brian and Kevin).
Family will receive guests on Friday, Oct. 28 from 6-8 p.m. with a memorial service to be held Saturday, Oct. 29 (time and location pending).
More information and a condolence book can be found at www.adamsgreen.com.
Photo: Dr. John D. Farrell Sr./Family photo via Adams Green Funeral Home.
Heidi Merkel, a senior planner with the Fairfax Department of Planning and Zoning who was instrumental in organizing and implementing the Reston Master Plan Special Study and plan amendment, died of cancer July 19. She was 49.
Merkel, of Arlington, is survived by her husband, Bill, and three children: Caroline, 15; Samuel, 12; and Caleb, 7; her father, Leland Tolo of West Hartford, Ct.; her brother, Paul Tolo, and sister-in-law, Jennifer Tolo, of Sammamish, Wash.; and her many beloved nieces and nephews.
Merkel attended high school in West Hartford, Ct., then received her bachelor’s degree from Bryn Mawr College and studied Urban and Regional Planning at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She began her professional career as an Associate Planner for the City of Danbury.
Merkel joined Fairfax County’s Department of Planning and Zoning (DPZ) in 1995. She later took five years off to raise her family, but after returning in 2007, she worked tirelessly to help move Reston into the future.
The Master Plan amendments were approved by the Board of Supervisors in 2014 and ’15.
“Heidi was a gem,” said land use lawyer Mark Looney, who served on the Reston Master Plan Special Study Task Force. The task force held dozens of meetings over four years, and Merkel attended most of them, even while battling her illness.
“She was so thoughtful and patient as she interacted with the Reston community through the years,” added Looney. “She would listen intently to every crackpot idea some developer or resident threw out and make them think there was nothing better. Heidi knew that deep down most people just want to know that they were heard.”
Some of the additional projects Merkel worked on in Reston:
- She was the Staff Liaison to the Hunter Mill Area Plans Review (APR) Task Force.
- In 1998, she was the lead planner on the plan amendment for the Reston Sheraton area, which helped to resolve a legal dispute between the property owners and the county.
- She led the Dulles Corridor Land Use Study in 2001, which was the first effort to plan for rail in the corridor.
- She led the planning study of the Lake Anne Village Center in 2009, which set the vision and plan for future redevelopment of Reston’s first village center.
“Heidi was a gifted planner who loved the Reston community that she served,” said Fred Selden, Director of Fairfax Planning and Zoning. “Heidi led policy initiatives that resulted in county policy supporting Transit-Oriented Development and the inclusion of affordable workforce housing in all mixed-use activity centers. She received numerous individual and team recognitions for outstanding performance and commendations over the years from Supervisor Hudgins and others.”
Heidi and her family were long-time members of Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, where she volunteered with the youth programs and participated in the bell choirs. She enjoyed spending time with her children most of all, and was an active parent at both Potomac Crescent Waldorf School and the Washington Waldorf School.
There will be a memorial service at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church, 3022 Woodlawn Ave., Falls Church, on Saturday, Aug. 27 at 11 am, with a lunch reception to follow in the church’s fellowship hall.
Memorial donations may be made to the Inova Life with Cancer Family Center at www.lifewithcancer.org/donate.
Photo Courtesy Fairfax County
Daryl was the son of Rodney E. Smith and Alene Smith and the older of their two children.
Daryl was born on Feb. 5, 1966 and grew up in Reston. He attended Lake Anne Elementary School, Herndon Middle School and Herndon High School. At HHS, he played football and participated in band.
He continued his education at Tennessee State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Engineering in 1991.
Daryl worked for George Mason University and then at American Systems Corporation in Chantilly for 24 years.
Daryl was a loving son, uncle and brother. He loved sports, “The Simpsons,” playing computer games, eating popcorn and encouraging his nephew, Thomas Mayo, in his football career.
He will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him. He is survived by his mother, Alene; sister, Leslie; nieces, Asheligh and Amber; nephews Thomas and Tory; grandnieces, Ayianna, Amariee, and Jamirah; and grandnephews Antonio and Jose.
Services were previously held. Contributions may be made to the Autism Society, 4340 East West Highway, Bethesda, Md., 20814.
Manny and his wife, Ruth, lived in Reston for more than 30 years, relocating from New York in 1974 to be near grown children.
At age 82, Manny became the oldest ball boy to work the U.S. Open tennis tournament in New York. That earned him a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records.
He competed several times in the Virginia Senior Olympics and the National Senior Olympics and was an avid softball and bridge player. His needlepoint works were also displayed at Reston Community Center in recent years.
Manny retired twice — from the fur industry in New York and later as a furniture salesman at Bloomingdales at Tysons Corner.
“I think being so active keeps me young,” Hershkowitz told the Washington Times in 2003. “I think age is a state of mind.”
He was a World War II veteran and was married to Ruth Hershkowitz for 73 years. They had three children, five grandchildren and four great grandchildren.
Manny is survived by his wife Ruth, children, Stephen (Louise), Jared (Fran) and Meryl (Peter); grandchildren, Rana (Mark), Jo (Steve), Arianna, Brittany and Steven; great grandchildren, James, Sean, Alan and Jason.
Donations may be made in his memory to the Ashby Pond Scholarship Fund or the Northern Virginia Hebrew Congregation Religious School.
Photo: Manny Hershkowitz/Legacy.com
Levine was a 2013 graduate of Herndon High School who was a junior Political Science major at the University of Miami.
At Miami, he was a member of Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity and was active in undergraduate student government.
Levine’s larger-than-life personality and witty sense of humor made him the life of the party, whether it was a gathering of two or a stadium full of fellow students.
“Truly beloved by all, Adam’s outgoing, caring personality and sense of humor was known to always make his friends smile,” Miami’s Vice President for Student Affairs Patricia Whitely said in a statement. “With a remarkably joyful disposition, he enjoyed helping his fellow students.”
He had a passion for leadership and helping others, working when he was a teen as a teacher at Northern Virginia Hebrew Congregation’s (NVHC) religious school and as a counselor at its summer camp for preschoolers.
Robert Nosanchuk, a family friend and the former rabbi at NVHC, said Levine has always been “the kind of kid people gravitated toward.”
“I first met him when he was nine, and that was the same kid at 21 the students at University of Miami will miss,” said Nosanchuk. “He was so affectionate and open hearted. He defined loyalty and protection. I saw that time and again. If this [tragedy] had happened to someone else, he would care more than anyone else. He was such a loyal, consistent friend.”
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, March 22 at NVHC, 1441 Wiehle Ave. in Reston.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial donations to the Camp Harlam Memorial Fund, c/o NVHC.
Photos courtesy Levine family
Kim, 20, graduated from SLHS in 2014 and was a second-year student at the University of Virginia.
Allen W. Groves, the University of Virginia Dean of Students, sent out a statement informing students of Kim’s death:
To the University Community:
I am very sorry to inform you of the death of second-year student Paul Kim, who died yesterday, January 12, at his home in Reston, Virginia, due to apparent complications following surgery.
Paul transferred to UVA this year after studying his first year at Christopher Newport University. He lived in Weedon House, was active in the Johnson Malone Weedon Community Council, and was involved with Chi Alpha, the Christian fraternal organization. His friends have noted his love of music, especially hip-hop.
Paul’s academic and career interests included economics, finance, and international business. He had hoped to be admitted to the McIntire School of Commerce. Another of his goals was to study Korean so he could communicate fluently in his family’s native language. He had planned to visit family members in Korea and become more familiar with his cultural heritage.
In his admission essay, he described his interest in cryptocurrencies. “The egalitarian values exhibited,” he said, “are captivating and have prompted my curiosity and interest in the innovations of today that could change our future tomorrow.” Paul was equally committed to being a good person, stating, “My academic and professional goals are a high priority but giving back to others and being a virtuous human being is more important to me.”
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday at Adams-Green Funeral Home, 721 Elden St., Herndon.
Photo Courtesy Adams-Green Funeral Home
Her death was caused by Alzheimer’s disease, which she had been battling with her characteristic grace and courage for the prior four years., her family said. Despite the ravages of the disease, Mary Ellen never lost her humor, compassion, and good cheer.
She was born in Indianapolis, IN, on March 4, 1939 and was raised by her mother Kathryn Smith and her extended family while her father Howard Craig served as a World War II paratrooper in the South Pacific. Mary Ellen went to Purdue on a full-ride academic scholarship to study nutrition and home economics and, upon graduation, enrolled in one of the first Peace Corps classes, spending two years in Chile and making friends and gaining life experiences that she’d reflect fondly on for the rest of her life.
Mary Ellen earned a Master’s degree from Columbia University and served as Dean of Women at Denison University before marrying Charles Alan Kase and raising her two children. Once her youngest child was enrolled in full-time elementary school, Mary Ellen jumped back into her professional life, earning a Law Degree from American University and serving and an intern for the Honorable Frank Q. Nebeker on the DC Superior Court before going into private practice in 1980.
Mary Ellen established a partnership with Susan Norwitch that she later developed into the Craig, Hirsch and Ellenberger LLP practice that she retired from in 2006. Mary Ellen lived in Reston, Virginia from 1971 through 2014 and deeply loved the town. She served Reston as President of the Forest Edge PTA and President of the Reston Association (2000-01) and as an ombudsman for Fairfax County and was active in many other church and community groups.
Mary Ellen left behind two children, Marc Kase and Stephanie Zucker; three grandchildren, Nathan, Katie and Bella Zucker; and her sister Tara Rinker. Mary Ellen loved to travel and all of her children and grandchildren and most of her relatives and friends can share wonderful stories of traveling the world with her. She also left behind a cat named Jazzie that loved only her, closets full of stylish and quirky outfits, and walls full of art from the Greater Reston Arts Center.
Mary Ellen was a wonderful parent, sister, daughter, aunt, niece, friend, role model and companion to all of us and will be sorely missed.
There will be a VA memorial service will be held at the Walker Nature Education Center, 1145 Glade Dr., on July 5 at 2 p.m. She will be buried at her family’s burial plot at the Franklin Greenlawn Cemetary in Frankin, IN on July 7 at 11:00 a.m.
In lieu of flowers, her family requests that donations be made to two charities Mary Ellen was passionate about:
Boys to Men Mentoring Network 9587 Tropico Drive La Mesa, CA 91941 www.boystomen.org.
Mountain Stewardship & Outdoor Leadership (SOL) School PO Box 18111 Morgantown, WV 26508 www.mountainsol.org.
A native of Syracuse, N.Y., Lawrence John Alciati Jr. was a longtime Reston resident who also had a home in Wellfleet, Mass.
Alciati led GRACE from 2006 to 2012, but remained on GRACE’s Board of Directors. He also was active in the Initiative for Public Art Reston (IPAR).
He and his wife Marianne were regulars at Reston’s charity, social and arts events. They also enjoyed extensive travel, and just last summer camped their way through Alaska and Western Canada.
At his home on Cape Cod, Alciati worked as a docent at the Wellfleet Bay Wildlife Sanctuary of the Massachusetts Audubon Society.
Alciati was a a graduate of Georgetown University and formerly was an executive at the American Institutes for Research in Washington, D.C.
A memorial service will be held on May 30 at 11 a.m. at St. Thomas a Becket Catholic Church, 1421 Wiehle Ave. in Reston.
Friends may offer condolences on the online guest book at Adams Green Funeral Home’s website.
Photo: John Alciati/Facebook