Raymond W. Thompson Jr., 87, naval officer...

February 18, 1999

Raymond W. Thompson Jr., 87, naval officer, engineer

Raymond W. Thompson Jr., a retired naval officer, electrical engineer and former Olympic swimmer, died Sunday of cancer at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda. He was 87 and lived in Bethesda.

He joined the interagency affairs office of the National Aeronautic and Space Administration in 1963 and retired in 1974.

Before then, the 1933 graduate of the Naval Academy served in the Pacific during World War II and later commanded a destroyer squadron in the North Atlantic. He retired with the rank of captain in 1963.

Born in Roland Park, he was a 1929 graduate of the Polytechnic Institute and earned a master's degree in electrical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

He held U.S. collegiate and Master's swimming records and in 1932 competed in the 100-meter freestyle event at the Los Angeles Olympic Games. In 1997, he was inducted into the Maryland Swimming Hall of Fame.

His marriage to Katherine Lenox Hayward ended in divorce. In 1951, he married Sidney Thompson, who died in 1994.

Mr. Thompson was a communicant and former senior warden of Christ Episcopal Church, 3116 O St. N.W., Washington, where services will be held at 1 p.m. today.

He is survived by a daughter, Katherine "Bonnie" Soniat of Roanoke, Va.; two stepsons, Robert H. Thompson of Kensington and G. Richard Thompson of Bethesda; and four grandchildren.

Thomas Elton Beam, 74, florist, volunteer

Thomas Elton Beam, a former florist, died Saturday of cancer at the Robosson Court Nursing Center in Randallstown. He was 74 and lived in the Villa Nova section of Baltimore County.

From the late 1950s until 1975, Mr. Beam owned and operated Nancy Carole Flowers on Reisterstown Road in Pikesville. After he sold the business, he worked for several years for a florist, then operated a plant maintenance service. He retired several years ago.

The Garrison native earned a bachelor's degree in horticulture from the University of Maryland, College Park and, during World War II, served in the Army.

He was active in the American Association of Retired Persons and was inducted into the Maryland Senior Citizens Hall of Fame last year for his work with senior citizens groups. He was a volunteer with the Liberty Assistance Center and Liberty Recreation Council.

He was an active member of Ames-Sudbrook United Methodist Church, where services were held Tuesday.

He is survived by a brother, Merlin Ayler Beam of Columbia, Pa.; and several nephews and nieces.

Sonia M. Owens, 89, executive secretary

Sonia M. Owens, retired executive secretary for a Baltimore advertising agency who was active in Polish cultural organizations, died Friday in her sleep at the Edenwald retirement community in Towson. She was 89.

Mrs. Owens was an executive secretary for Emery Advertising from 1950 until the early 1970s. She had been a resident of Edenwald since 1996 after residing in Charles Village and Roland Park.

The former Sonia Malaszek, the daughter of Polish immigrants, was born in Fells Point and graduated from Baltimore Business College. She was a member of the Polish Heritage Association of Maryland and other organizations.

In 1940, she married Bernard F. Owens Sr., an architect, who died in 1976.

She was a communicant of SS. Philip and James Roman Catholic Church in Baltimore, where a Mass of Christian burial was offered Tuesday.

She is survived by several cousins.

Memorial service

Reginald Sidney Tickner, a longtime educator and coach at Gilman School who died Jan. 7 at age 76, will be honored at a 10 a.m. memorial service Saturday at Gilman's Alumni Auditorium, 5407 Roland Ave.

Pub Date: 2/18/99

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