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Winston D. Powers
Winston D. Powers

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Date published: 2/21/2003

Winston D. Powers

Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. Winston D. Powers, 72, of Fredericksburg died Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2003, at Carriage Hill Nursing Home in Spotsylvania. He had congestive heart failure and diabetes.

He directed the Defense Communications Agency from 1983 until his retirement in 1987. At the agency, Gen. Powers was responsible for management and direction of the worldwide Defense Communication System. He managed the communications facilities of many federal agencies.

After retiring, he held several consulting jobs, including vice president for business development at McDonnell Douglas Electronic Systems Co. in McLean.

He was a New York native and a graduate of McKendree College in Illinois and the Industrial College of the Armed Forces in Washington.

He began his Air Force career in 1950 and became a master navigator with more than 4,000 flying hours. He served in the Vietnam War and flew 75 combat missions.

His assignments took him to Asia and Europe. In 1974, he returned to Washington to take on increasing responsibilities in defense communications work. He was promoted to general in 1978.

His decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, three awards of the Meritorious Service Medal, two awards of the Air Medal and the Air Force Commendation Medal.

Air Force Space Command Headquarters named an award for communications excellence in his honor, and he was inducted into the Air Force Communications and Information Hall of Fame.

His hobbies included gardening and painting watercolors.

Survivors include his wife of 49 years, Jeanette Wyche Powers of Fredericksburg; two children, Diane Powers-Nock of Chantilly and Air Force Lt. Col. Winston David Powers of Mililani, Hawaii; a brother; four sisters; and two grandchildren.

A funeral will be held at 9 a.m. Tuesday, Feb. 25, at Old Fort Myer Chapel, with Chaplain Kenyon officiating. Interment will be in Arlington National Cemetery, with full military honors.

The family requests that expressions of sympathy take the form of contributions to the American Diabetes Association, Rappahannock Affiliate, Box 1385, Fredericksburg, Va. 22402.

A.L. Bennett Funeral Home, Fredericksburg, is in charge of arrangements.