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Harry Bacas November 11, 1922 - November 17, 2016

Harry Bacas, a longtime Arlington, VA resident and World War II veteran, who rose from copy boy to become a top editor of the Washington Star, died on Thursday, November 17, 2016 in Santa Rosa, CA after a brief hospitalization at age 94. An Arlington, VA resident for over 50 years, Harry had moved to California in 2007.
Born on November 11, 1922, in Washington DC, the son of a Greek immigrant, Harry graduated from Eastern High School and served in World War II as part of the 461st anti-aircraft battalion that stormed Omaha Beach during the Allied invasion of Normandy in June 1944. He fought in all five European campaigns and was awarded two Silver Stars.
On the GI bill, Harry received his BA in English from the University of Maryland, and studied English Literature at Stanford University. While teaching at Mills College in Oakland CA, he met his future wife, Eliza Goddard Weeks, a native Virginian. They returned to Washington, DC and were married in 1952. Eliza died in 2005.
Harry joined the Evening Star (later renamed the Washington Star) in 1951 as a copy boy and was soon promoted to reporter. As chairman of the Star unit of the Washington-Baltimore Newspaper Guild, he led the first successful strike at the paper in 1958. He went on to serve as editor of the newspaper's Sunday Magazine, City Desk, and Portfolio sections. After the Star folded in 1981, he wrote for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Nation's Business magazine as a special assignment reporter until retiring in 1988. From the 1960's until the 1980's Harry was an avid auto-enthusiast, competing in road rallies and auto-crosses throughout the greater Washington DC area. His passion for bicycling led to numerous cycle tour vacations in the U.S, and Europe and he was a dedicated swimmer at the Washington-Lee Aquatics Center.

Attribution: Legacy.com
Obit: Harry


Edgar Henry Lichty Jr., 87, Composing Room Manager of The Washington Star,subsequently The Washington Times

Edgar Henry Lichty Jr., 87, of Huddleston, beloved husband, father and grandfather, died Friday, October 21, 2016 at Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. He was born on Saturday, August 3, 1929 in Bethlehem, Pa., a son of the late Edgar Henry Lichty Sr. and Evelyn Mae Fehnel Lichty. Ed was a retired Composing Room Manager of The Washington Star,subsequently The Washington Times and was an active Masonic member.Ed was born and raised in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania where he started his printing career with his father. He married Evelyn Jean Blanchard on August 9, 1950, and was married to her for over 66 years. Soon after he was drafted to serve in the Korean War in the Army Corps of Engineers. Upon returning, he moved to the D.C. Metro area where he continued his printing career at the Government Printing Office. He would soon move to The Washington Star where he worked for 26 years. Ed helped start The Washington Times and worked there for 10 years before retiring to Smith Mountain Lake, where he played in the Kazim band for 22 years.He was a Master Mason at the District of Columbia, Grand Naval Lodge No. 4 attaining 32nd degree status, with memberships in Shriners International, Tall Cedars of Lebanon, Scottish Rite of Freemasonry and Almas Temple.

Attribution: The Roanoke Times

Lewis Liberty “Lou” Bennett, Washington Star 1955 to 1971 Route Manger & Mechanic


Lewis Liberty “Lou” Bennett, 85, of Charlotte Hall, MD passed away on October 12, 2016 at the Charlotte Hall Veterans Home.

Lou was born on July 4, 1931 to the late Frank and Olive M. Earnhardt Bennett in Norfolk, VA.

Lou’s professional endeavors expanded across careers providing public service and a great spirit of entrepreneurship. He served as a Master Mechanic 2nd Class on the U.S.S. Great Sitkin from January 1952 to April 1955 where he was deployed to the Mediterranean supporting mobile ready reserve fleet ammunition, and later in fleet maneuvers in the Atlantic (New York) and the Caribbean. His career included working at the Washington Star from 1955 to 1971 as a route manger and mechanic in Southern Prince George’s County, MD. He also worked for Buck Distributing, Upper Marlboro, MD, and as an Engineer for The State Department, Washington, D.C. where he retired at almost 71 years of age. The Southern Maryland community knew him as owner/operator of Williams Package Goods, Hughesville, MD; and several other small businesses over the years. Lou loved spending time with his family and many friends, especially on his 4th of July birthday. He also loved camping, riding his Harley, and tinkering with mechanical things. He was a member of the American Legion and Moose Lodge.

Attribution: Southern Maryland News Net

Shirley Elder Lyons, 85, reporter and Tip O’Neill biographer

Shirley Elder Lyons, 85, of Portsmouth, N.H., a former Washington political reporter, died on Sunday, September 18, 2016, of complications of Parkinson's disease.

Born in California, she was raised in Seattle. She graduated from Stanford University in 1954 and went to Washington, D.C., as a reporter, first for The Washington Post, later for the Washington Daily News and the Washington Star. She was co-author of two books: Tip, a Biography of Thomas P. O'Neill Jr., Speaker of the House and Interest Groups, Lobbying and Policymaking.

She moved to Sandwich, New Hampshire, in 1981 with her husband, Richard L. Lyons, but continued working part time as a reporter for the Boston Globe's New Hampshire Weekly.

In Sandwich, Shirley was president of the Friends of the Samuel Wentworth Library, a member of the Bearcamp Valley Garden Club, the New Hampshire Music Festival, Sandwich Historical Society, the Society for the protection of New Hampshire Forests and the Over the Hill hikers. She worked as a writer and co-editor on the book of Sandwich history published in 1995 by the Sandwich Historical Society.

When Shirley Elder Lyons received the New Hampshire Bar Association’s Print Media Award in 1993 for the second consecutive year, she had already spent four decades in a career that took her from California to covering Congress to the Granite State.

As a correspondent for the Globe’s New Hampshire Weekly, she examined campaign funding, interviewed politicians, and profiled top judges and lawyers – only to subsequently report on ethics woes some of them faced.

She also reported on the achievements of women who pushed for gender parity in New Hampshire’s elected offices and legal community. Mrs. Lyons’s profile of the first woman to serve as president of the state bar association was among the pieces that led to the award.

“My philosophy is we have a responsibility to educate people and to tell people in simple terms about complex legal issues,” she told the Globe in a January 1993 interview.

Attribution: Bostonglobe.com, Legacy.com

Richard Stakes, Former President/CEO, 1923-2016

Richard Stewart "Dick" Stakes, age 93, of Hilton Head Island, passed away September 11, 2016 at home surrounded by his family and caregivers. Born June 27, 1923 at the family home in Luttrellville, Virginia to the late Nettie Lee Reynolds and the late Thomas Edward Stakes. Dick served in the U. S. Army during WWII winning the Bronze Star Medal as an artillery forward observer. He graduated from Benjamin Franklin University in Washington DC with a BS degree in Financial Management. Dick was recalled during the Korean War and served in Germany as a lieutenant in the artillery. After returning to Washington, DC, he worked for WTTG(TV), in the accounting department subsequently becoming business manager. He left WTTG in 1956 to join Evening Star Broadcasting, ultimately becoming president and chief executive officer. In 1976 he moved from the broadcasting arm when he was elected president and chief executive officer of the Washington Star newspaper. In 1977, he left the Star to become executive vice-president of WSPA, Spartanburg, SC. Dick retired from Summit Communications, Winston-Salem, NC in 1988 when he and his wife, the late Christine Beuchert of Washington, DC, came to Hilton Head Plantation. Dick was a founder and board member of the Institute of Broadcast Financial Management (now MFMA), and belonged to numerous industry organizations. He was a founding member the South Carolina Yacht Club. Dick loved boating the waters around the Northern Neck of Virginia and Hilton Head, dining out with friends and rocking in his favorite chair on the back porch in his Hilton Head "paradise".

Attribution: Legacy.com

2016 Reunion

Photo by Bill Grigg
Joan Anderson - "Twenty four people showed up at the Hawk & Dove yesterday to commemorate the 35th anniversary of The Star's demise. They were Joan Anderson, Marjorie and Steve Aug, David Breasted, Diane Brockett, Berthene Bruce, Abby Chapple, Mike Coram, Pat Fanning, Nancy and Craig Ferris, Sara Fitzgerald, Ben Forgey, Bill Grigg, Roxanne Hughes, Orr Kelly, Annie L. Lee, Sandra McElwaine, Lew Sichelman, Ron Sarro, Don Smith, Arnold and Lillian Taylor, and Walt Wurfel."

New Reunion Spot - Hawk and Dove

New Reunion Spot. Star colleagues will gather this year at the Hawk and Dove on Capitol Hill on Sunday, August 7 at 2 pm to eat, drink, and carry on the tradition of recognizing that fateful day -- now 35 years ago. -- when we went our separate ways. Please come and email those you know who don't follow Facebook. Also reply here or email me to say you are coming, so we will have a rough headcount. System will be same as at Mr. Henry's. You order and pay for whatever you want. Hope to see many of you soon. Joan Anderson.