Alan Dragoo

In Memory of Alan, 1938-2007

Alan Dragoo

Alan Dragoo, longtime member of Seekers and husband of Mary Carol, died on November 2, 2007. He had a serious fall on October 22 resulting in two brain bleeds and a deep coma from which he never awoke. Alan and Mary Carol have been at Church of the Saviour and Seekers since 1971, and their daughters Amy and Kyrie grew up in both churches. In the weeks prior to his death, joy came to Alan through many sources; his creative juices revitalized, he finished two poems, and he took time to carefully hang and admire a new addition to the Dragoo household, a photo gifted by his photographer daughter, Amy.

Alan Dragoo
Alan Dragoo, longtime member of Seekers and husband of Mary Carol, died on November 2, 2007. He had a serious fall on October 22 resulting in two brain bleeds and a deep coma from which he never awoke. Alan and Mary Carol have been at Church of the Saviour and Seekers since 1971, and their daughters Amy and Kyrie grew up in both churches. In the weeks prior to his death, joy came to Alan through many sources; his creative juices revitalized, he finished two poems, and he took time to carefully hang and admire a new addition to the Dragoo household, a photo gifted by his photographer daughter, Amy.

Alan was at Suburban Hospital during Kyrie’s wedding to Darin Solk, which took place on October 26 at the Jefferson Memorial grounds in Washington. The ceremony was performed by Sonya Dyer, who had returned to Washington from North Carolina for the occasion. During the wedding, Amy read a poem Alan had written for the occasion, and Darin wore the tie Alan had picked out for himself to wear. The bridal party recelebrated the wedding ceremony at Alan’s ICU hospital bed later in the day as friends and family gathered at the Seekers Church for the wedding reception.

Alan’s fall occurred when he was on his way to the Seekers Artists Mission Group, where he had been a member for 30 years and where he intended to present and discuss the final version (no. 10) of his poem on death, "The Dead Sea." The poem was precipitated by the death of Nelson Good and offered Alan a way to look both at his own cancer and possible death and at life in general. Alan was completely elated when he finished the poem the week before he fell, and he told Mary Carol, "I feel just like I did when I finished the Ph.D." Alan’s own summary of the poem is that "God has given me a good life and God will give me a good death."

Alan and Mary Carol met at the Wesley Foundation of the University of Michigan and were married during the summer of 1962; that fall Mary Carol finished her B.S.Ed. and Alan his M.A. When they came to Washington, their student pastor told them to join a "church that needs you," not a big memorial church. They did so but were burning out by giving in service but not receiving in terms of spiritual nurture. David Dorsey of Eighth Day Church had been a part of the University of Michigan Wesley group and would have been in the Dragoo wedding party except that he was in the Peace Corps in Africa. Upon his return to DC, the Dragoos introduced him to the Church of the Saviour, feeling he would not be interested in the church they were attending. David became involved in C of S and through his interest brought Alan and Mary Carol to membership.

Alan’s own obituary, written for Jesse Palidofsky’s recent class, "The Sacred Circle of Life: Living and Dying," reads as follows (with some information supplied):
 
Alan Lewis Dragoo, Scientist and Poet, (born August 29, 1938,) died on (November 2, 2007, as the result of a fall on concrete where a tree root had raised the sidewalk.) Dr. Dragoo was a researcher at National Institute of Standards and Technology until he transferred to the Department of Energy in 1989, where he served as a project manager in the Ceramic Sciences Program in the Division of Materials Sciences of the Basic Sciences Division. He was granted a Ph.D. in Physics by the University of Maryland in 1975.

He married Mary Carol Stowe in 1962. They had two daughters, Amy Katherine Dragoo of Coatesville, PA, and Kyrie Elizabeth Dragoo of Washington, DC.

Dr. Dragoo survived (for six years) after surgery, radiation, and chemotherapy for a brain tumor in 2001. He was an active member of the Seekers Church in Takoma, DC.
 
Alan’s memorial service will take place on Saturday, December 8, at 1:00 p.m. at Carroll St.; there will be time for brief spoken remembrances and a book for written remembrances.  The service will be followed by a reception.

Alan always was interested in the world, art, and science and spent most evenings watching local WETA public television. He would be happy to know that anyone who wanted to give a memorial contribution would do so to support either WETA or the Brain Tumor Society. Contributions to the memory of Alan L. Dragoo may be made to WETA-TV (send to Miss Sheryl Lahti, WETA, 2775 South Quincy Street, Arlington, VA 22206 and stipulate WETA-TV) or The Brain Tumor Society (The Brain Tumor Society, Attention: Memorial Gifts, 124 Watertown Street, Suite 34, Watertown, MA 02472).

In either instance, please indicate that this contribution is in memory of Alan L. Dragoo.

 

Click here to see the last poem Alan wrote, "Dead Sea".

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