Leonard Robert Raish – Captain, United States Navy

From a contemporary press report:

Leonard Robert Raish, 83, a retired Navy captain who was a senior partner at the Arlington law firm of Fletcher, Heald & Hildreth, where he had worked since 1976, died of cancer August 18, 2001, at Inova Alexandria Hospital.

He had lived in Alexandria since 1961 and lived off and on in the Washington area since the 1930s.

Captain Raish, a native of Binghamton, New York, received a bachelor's degree and a law degree from Georgetown University.

He joined the Navy in 1941 and retired in 1969.

During World War II, he served in the Atlantic, the Mediterranean and the Pacific. In 1951, he was stricken with polio and spent almost a year at Bethesda Naval Hospital. He challenged a discharge order and was among the first polio survivors to remain on active duty.

He served at communications postings in London and Paris before returning to the Washington area in the 1960s. When he retired in 1969, he was serving as a telecommunications expert at the White House. He served in that capacity as a civilian before joining the law firm.

There, he was an expert on telecommunications regulations and served on various federal advisory panels. In 1974, he was vice chairman of the U.S. delegation to the International Maritime Radio Conference. In 1987, he was chairman of the American delegation to the World Radio Conference.

Capt. Raish was on the board of directors of the Benedictine School for Exceptional Children in Ridgley, Md., as well as the New York-based Hawthorne Foundation for People With Developmental Disabilities. He was active in alumni affairs at Georgetown University.

He was a board member and counsel to the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association and the Radio Technical Commission for Maritime Services. In 2000, he was awarded the Marconi Memorial Gold Medal of Achievement by the Veteran Wireless Operators Association.

Survivors include his wife of 54 years, Angela Raish of Alexandria; two sons, John, of Athens, and Stephen, of Westchester, N.Y.; a brother; and two granddaughters.


On Saturday, August 18, 2001, LEONARD ROBERT RAISH of Alexandria, VA. Husband of Angela Mary Raish; father of John and Stephen Raish; father-in-law of Flora Raish; grandfather of Christina and Maria Raish. Funeral services at 12:45 p.m. on Thursday, September 6, at the Old Chapel, Fort Myer, Arlington, VA. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to Hawthorne Foundation for People with Developmental Disabilities, 5 Bradhurst Ave., Hawthorne, NY 10532 or to the National Kidney Foundation, 5335 Wisconsin Ave., N.W., Suite 300, Washington, D.C. 20015.

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