From a contemporary press report:
Merlon F. Richards, 78, retired chief executive of what is now DynCorp, a privately held information technology company, died of cancer October 23, 1998 at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington. He lived in Chevy Chase, Maryland.
Mr. Richards, who began working for the company in 1952, held numerous executive positions at Dynalectron — as it was then called — including vice chairman and chief executive until his retirement in 1985.
The company, a diversified provider of missile range and space data services, aircraft and missile modification maintenance and other technical services to the government, changed its name to DynCorp in 1987 and was taken private in a leveraged buyout a year later.
He served on DynCorp's board of directors until 1988. He also served on the boards of Riggs National Bank and more than 20 other corporations.
As a volunteer, he divided his attention among various organizations. He served as a Boy Scout troop committee member, vice chairman for Boy Scout membership and Boy Scout district chairman. He led the reorganization of the Montgomery Boy Scout districts and was vice chairman at large for the Potomac district. This year, he received the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award.
He also worked with the Interfaith Coalition Against Substance Abuse for Montgomery County and served on the Corporate Advisory Council of the Washington Chapter of the Brigham Young Management Society.
He was born in Farmington, Utah, and raised in Salt Lake City. After graduating from the University of Utah, he served in Europe with the 104th Infantry Division during World War II. His military honors included the Silver and Bronze Stars.
He received a master's degree in business administration from Harvard University after the war and joined the Chicago offices of Arthur Anderson & Co. in 1947 as a certified public accountant. After five years there, he became executive vice president of Land Air Inc., a predecessor to Dynalectron.
He served in leadership positions within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints including ward mission leader and public communications director.
His wife, Caryle Richards, died in 1994. Survivors include four children, Craig Richards of Charlotte, Cathy Hockenjos of Madison, N.J., Cynthia Parkinson of Houston and Julie Hill of Ranch Palos Verdes, Calif.; and 22 grandchildren.
RICHARDS, MERLON F.
On Friday, October 23, 1998, MERLON F. RICHARDS, husband of the late Caryle Vanderberg Richards; father of Craig M. Richards, Cathy Hockenios, Cynthia Parkinson and Julie Hill; brother of Elaine Earl, Norine Kirk, Derrill and Stanley Richards. Twenty-two grandchildren also survive. Services will be held at Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter Day Saints, 5460 Western Ave., Chevy Chase, MD, on Friday, October 30, at 11 a.m. Interment Arlington National Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to the National Capital Area Council of Boy Scouts of America, 9190 Rockville Pike, Bethesda, MD 20814.
Reviewed by: Michael Howard