Jay Donald LaMar, 72, CIA officer

December 25, 2005

Jay Donald LaMar, a retired intelligence officer in the CIA whose work took him around the world, died Dec. 18 at Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care of complications from diabetes and the flu. He was 72 and lived in Timonium.

"He was so patriotic," said Priscilla LaMar, his wife of 23 years. "Every morning he would tell me that he was off to fight communism. He never thought he'd outlive it."

Mr. LaMar was born in Jacksonville, Fla. He graduated from Bladensburg High School and Western Maryland College in 1955 with a degree in English.

Mr. LaMar served as an infantry lieutenant in Korea and rose to the rank of lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve.

Mrs. LaMar said her husband joined the CIA in 1959. His assignments took him to the United Kingdom, Japan, Vietnam, the Middle East and Panama. In 1974, he was awarded the civilian service medal for his work in Vietnam.

Mr. LaMar retired from the CIA in 1987 but did contract work for the agency until 1995.

"When he came home from work you didn't normally say `What did you do today?,'" Mrs. LaMar said. "You would wait and see what he would bring up."

About a year and half ago, Mr. LaMar lost his eyesight, but he kept up with his reading using books on CDs. Mr. LaMar's other interests included lacrosse, photography and railroads.

He was a member of the Delmarva chapter of the Central Intelligence Retirees Association, the 7th Infantry Division Association and the 32nd Infantry Regiment Association, among others.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday in the chapel of the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 5603 N. Charles St., where he was a communicant.

In addition to his wife, whom he first met in college but married after being reunited 30 years later, Mr. LaMar is survived by three sons, Andrew LaMar of Newport News, Va., Jonathan LaMar of Burlington, N.J., and George LaMar of England; a daughter, Leslie LaMar Sinclair of Alexandria, La.; a stepson, David McIntyre of Coatesville, Pa.; a stepdaughter, Susan McIntyre Titman of Towson; and six grandchildren. His first marriage ended in divorce.

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