Born at Cincinnati, OH; became hard of hearing at 19 from exposure to the noise of explosions during Army training in World War II. Entered University of Southern California in 1945, graduating 1949, then did further study in international studies. Recruited into the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), he had a 25-year career there, during which he did sensitive "field work" in other countries despite his deafness. Among his work was helping to restore the shah of Iran to his throne in 1953, supporting a failed coup in Syria, foiling another attempted coup in Nepal, and serving as chief of intelligence in Vietnam, during which he was also involved in ultimately-failed attempts to negotate a settlement with the Viet Cong; he also served in Pakistan and Italy. Left the CIA in 1975 after a fall down a flight of stairs in Rome caused the loss of his remaining hearing; retired with the CIA's highest medal award. Founded Self-Help for Hard of Hearing People, Inc. (SHHH) in 1979 and served as its first executive director until retiring in 1993. The next year, he lost his sight to macular degeneration, but a cochlear implant gave him enough hearing to communicate orally with his family again. Received honorary doctorate from Gallaudet University, 1991. Died in Washington, DC of complications from pneumonia.
Washington Post, Aug. 24, 2004, p.B6; Silent News, April 1994, p.20.
1925?-13 August 2004