Dorothy Braddock Preslar (1936–2017)


A resident of 37th Street since 1967, Dorothy Braddock Preslar was born in 1936 in Bristol, TN, and died February 23, 2017 in Washington, DC. According to her son, Lyle, “She loved the neighborhood and its residents throughout the years.” 

Ms. Preslar wrote her own death announcement, which was published in the Washington Post on January 30, 2017 and reprinted below.

"Now are the woods all black, but still the sky is blue."

Dorothy Braddock Preslar, dead at 80 on January 23, 2017 of respiratory failure and other co-morbidities, described herself as a "self-empty glass girl."

One of her two favorite lines of poetry was that above from an obscure French poet/philosopher of the early 20th century. The other was from 1975 lyrics written for The Eagles by Randy Meisner: "So put me on a highway and show me a sign, and take it to the limit one more time."

After graduation cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa from Wake Forest University and an early career in writing, editing, promotion, and art gallery management, Dorothy turned her attention to family. While raising a son and daughter she developed skills in furniture refinishing (e.g., an apartment grand piano). When a legal job required certification she took basic law school courses at George Washington University School of Law. For another job in law firm assistance she studied finance, accounting, and statistics at Kogod School of Business at American University. And when she needed training in biology she enlisted a company laboratory director as her tutor in monoclonal antibodies.

So it was that when a neighbor who sought her help in cutting shelves for a bookcase called her a "Renaissance woman," a boss called her a "fast study," or a critic insisted that she had no acceptable credentials to direct a public policy project on infectious diseases and their implications in biological weapons defense she simply replied "I'm well read."

She leaves two children, Lyle Preslar of Montclair, NJ, and Anna Preslar of San Francisco; granddaughter, Romy Alouete Preslar; daughter-in-law, Sandy Alouete; brother, James Wayne Braddock of Ocean Isle Beach, NC; sister, Anne Bagley Braddock of Spokane, WA, and their families.

There will be no service for Dorothy whose body she donated to the Georgetown University Hospital School of Medicine Anatomical Program. No services will be held. To those who wish to celebrate her life, Dorothy recommends "Cristalino," a value-based Spanish "bubbly,"

The end.