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In Memoriam

New In Memoriam Page
Posted: August 1, 2012

A new In Memoriam page has been created to post announcements of Intelsat colleagues and members of IRA/IRAA who sadly have been lost. The dates of their passing are also published in our bi-annual Re-Intelsat Newsletter.

Scroll down below to view Obituaries/Death Notices by DOD. 

Click Excel listing sorted alphabetically and by date of death (DOD).

If anyone may know details of the passing of our Intelsat friends/colleagues below, please kindly EMail info to info@myiraa.com

- Royal Bailey (IOC/Communications Center)

- Hassan Koibla (Operations/Antenna Verification)

- Joe Moore (TVSC)

- Vernon Stewart (IOC/Communications Center)

If you may know of other former colleagues or members who have been lost and whose names do not appear here, it would be greatly appreciated if you may please let us know the details along with any Obituary newspaper announcements if available electronically. Please kindly Email to: info@myiraa.com.


Current Year:


Vicente (Vic) Matias

27 December  2020
Vic Matias

Vic was born on Dec., 6th, 1941 and passed into heaven on Dec., 27th, 2020.  He was beloved by many who knew him through the many years he worked at Intelsat. 

For service/prayer details and further info:  https://vicentematiasjr.carrd.co/


Robert Strauss

25 November  2020
Robert Strauss

Born in Stuttgart, Germany in 1927, passed away on the evening of November 25, 2020 at his home in McLean, Virginia at the age of 93. At the height of his career, Mr. Strauss was Director of Reliability and Standards for COMSAT. His specialty was microwave amplification transmission and linearizing power systems including photovoltaics. He was instrumental in the develop of Early Bird. Following retirement from INTELSAT, Mr. Strauss worked 27 years as a consultant in communications satellites: Users and builders of space craft, earth stations, critical failure analysis and power microwave amplifiers. He also served as technical adviser in the establishment of SIRRUS Radio. He received degrees in engineering from Cornell University and MSEE from Lehigh University. He worked as Department Head of Traveling Wave Tube development at Sperry Rand and device development at Bell Laboratories. He is survived by his children, Stephen Elliot Strauss, Susan Elisabeth Strauss and Diane Elise Strauss; and two grandchildren Geneva and Lukas Strauss-Wise. No services are planned at this time.  To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.



Rogeil (Roger) Guillermo

18 October  2020
Roger Guillermo (spouse of Cora Guillermo)

Sad news rcvd via Romy Balod of the passing of Cora Guillermo's spouse, Rogelio (Roger), on 18th Oct., 2020, at the age of 79.  Roger was a US Navy veteran who served at the White House under several presidents, including Gerald Ford.  He retired frm the Navy, joined the US Secret Service for many years, retired and settled in Las Vegas where he passed away.  Here are the service details for Roger:

Oct. 25, 2020 Sun., Visitation 5-9pm, Palm Southwest Mortuary, 7979 W. Warm Springs, Rd., Las Vegas, NC 89113

Oct 26., 2020 Mon., Church Service, 9:30am, Eulogies, 10:00am, Mass, Christ the King Catholic Community, 4925 S. Torrey Pines, Las Vegas, NC 8i9118

Nov. 2, 2020 Mon., 1:20pm, Burial at Southern Nevada Veterans Memorial Cemetery


Pietro DeSantis

26 September 2020
Pietro DeSantis

Learned of the passing of Pietro from his daughter daughter, Dominique, who prepared this obituary:

Pietro De Santis, 82, died on 26 September 2020 in Switzerland after a short battle with stomach cancer. His funeral will be held on 1 October in his wife’s hometown in Switzerland, best known for its local wines.
Pietro was born in 1937 in Rome, Italy, to a naval engineer and a French teacher. He dedicated his life to science and research after obtaining a master’s degree in the US and a PhD in Rome.
Pietro worked as a university professor in Rome and Naples at the beginning and at the end of his long career in telecommunications. An academic at heart, he was passionate about teaching students the ABCs of telecommunications management. His motto was: “Every day I try to learn something new”.
Pietro joined Intelsat in 1980 and retired as R&D Manager in 1997. He cherished his friendship with several Intelsat colleagues until his unexpected departure in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The eternal philosopher, one of Pietro’s parting phrases was: “Every instant is eternal – you don’t know when you are going to die.”
He is survived by his wife, daughter and two grandchildren.



Peter Roach

8 Septemnber 2020
Peter Roach

Learned of the passing of Peter from his spouse, Barbara. No other details available.


Helen Griffiths

13 August 2020
Helen Griffiths (spouse of David Griffiths)

On August 13, 2020 Helen Griffiths of Rockville, Maryland passed away with complications following heart surgery. Very beloved wife of David J. Griffiths; mother of Gareth M. and Jonathan A. Griffiths; grandmother of Ryan M. Griffiths of Gaithersburg; parents (deceased) were Frederick & Nellie Pearson of Lancashire, England; sister of Joyce Pirie of Rainford, England, Elizabeth Pearson of Dunrobin, Canada and Heather Lewis (deceased) in S. Wales; also survived by many nieces and nephews & their children.

Helen was born 27 October,1947 in Wigan, Lancashire, England, some 20 minutes before her twin sister Lizie who misses her terribly; telephone cocktails/wine with Lizie were a daily ritual. After finishing college in S. Wales with a teaching qualification Helen emigrated to join David in Winnipeg, Canada in July 1969 and they were married in S. Wales on 29 December 1969. Helen and David relocated to Ottawa, Canada in mid 1973 and began a family where their sons were born. The family moved to Rockville, Maryland in August, 1985 and have lived in the same home on Glen Mill Rd for the last 35 years.

Beside substitute teaching Helen has been an active & successful Real Estate professional for the last 30 years. Helen was hospitalized at Washington Hospital Center for the last 6 weeks where the professionals did all they could to get Helen well. In spite of Covid restrictions David, Gareth & Jonathan were allowed to be with Helen in her final hours, with Lizie attending via Facetime. Helen passed peacefully with her family at her side at 3:30 pm.

A funeral service will be held at Collins Funeral home at 11:00 am on Friday, 21 August, prior to cremation arrangements. Due to Covid restriction attendance at the service is limited to ten (10) immediate family and very close friends.

The family intends to have a celebration/memorial of Helen’s life when Covid restriction allow, hopefully sometime within the next 12 months.

We hope to have a Zoom and Youtube-Llve stream available for those who would like to virtually attend (sign in details are below). The family hopes to prepare a video of the service that will be available on request.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made online, in Memory of Helen Griffiths, to The American Heart Association, Doctors Without Borders or The American Cancer Society. (Direct links to each listed below)

To send flowers to the family of Helen Griffiths please visit our Tribute Store.


Victor Slabinski

6 June 2020
Victor Slabinski

Received news from Diane McCarthy who received from staff at the US Naval Observatory where Victor worked, that Victor had passed away due to long-term health issues which caught up with him and unrelated to COVID-19.  The family has elected to hold a small private ceremony for family and close friends. If you'd like to send condolences and/or a cad to Mrs. Victor Slabinski (Margaret, 3457 South Utah Street, Arlington, VA 22206-1919


Norma Lopatin

30 May 2020
Norma Lopatin (spouse of Andrew Lopatin)

Received news from Andrea Lopatin of the recent passing of his dear wife, Norma, on 30 May 2020.  There are no further details available.


Elizabeth V. Burkitt

25 April 2020
Betty Burkitt (spouse of Frank Burkitt)

Elizabeth V. Burkitt (83) of Naples, FL passed away on Saturday, April 25 at her home.

Betty was born in Brooklyn, NY in 1936. She met her husband, Frank on the BMT subway in New York City. She and Frank were married in 1958 and moved to Maryland shortly afterward where they raised 5 children.

Betty devoted her life to her family and cherished her role as Mother to 5 and Grandmother to 12. While raising her children she enjoyed volunteering at swim meets, driving carpools and helping out at various school events. When her grandchildren arrived she was the “go to” for advice on rearing children.

Betty enjoyed traveling the world with the love of her life, Frank. They experienced adventures that ranged from African Safaris, to snorkeling the Great Barrier Reef to strolling the Great Wall of China.

Betty and Frank moved to Naples, FL in 2000. Betty was surrounded by many friends in their neighborhood. She enjoyed sitting by the pool with friends, book club and dining out. Throughout her entire life, she held an unwavering faith in God and was an active member in the Catholic Church.

She is survived by her husband of 62 years, Frank, her children Frank (Susan) of Wilson, WY, Paul (Cheryl) of Devon, PA, Michael (Anne) of Oak Island, NC, David (Katie) of Ellicott City, MD and Elizabeth (Ted) of Darnestown, MD. She is also survived by 12 grandchildren, Sean, Jack, Paige, Ryan, Brooke, Cole, Hunter, Ellie, Quinn, Luke, Connor and Kelly Anne as well as numerous cousins in the greater New York and Boston area. Betty is predeceased by her mother, Elizabeth Giblin.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a Memorial Mass will be held at a later date.

On behalf of her family, donations can be made to the Melanoma Research Foundation. https://memorial-fundraising.everydayhero.com/us/in-memory-of-elizabeth-v-burkitt

Online condolences may be offered by visiting www.ShikanyFuneralHome.com.



Don Edgell

25 February 2020
Don Edgell (spouse of Danielle Edgell)

The Congregation sadly mourns the loss of Don Edgell, husband of Danielle Edgell.  Don passed away this morning.  Graveside funeral service will take place at 2:00 PM on Thursday, February 28 at Quantico National Cemetery (14824 Joplin Rd. (Rte. 619), Triangle, VA 22172).  Shiva minyanim will take place at 7:00 PM on Thursday, February 27, Saturday, February 29 and Sunday, March 1 at the home of Danielle Edgell (20618 Golden Ridge Dr., Ashburn, VA 20147).  Please note that parking on the street is not allowed.  Donations in memory of Don may be made to the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.  Our sincere condolences to the Edgell family.  It is our hope that those who did not have the privilege of knowing Don will come to do so in the days ahead through his familky and friends sharing their loving memories.


Helmut Wild

8 February 2020
Helmut Wild

Helmut's spouse, Larissa, advised of the passing of Helmut due to complications of a collapsed lung, surpassing all expectations f a 2-5 year survival after a lung transplant in 2012.


Eva Chamberlin

12 January 2020
Eva Chamberlin (spouse of Luis Mel Chamberlin)

Mel advised that he lost his wife, Eva, and his son, David, just three weeks later on 3 Feb. 2020.


Caryl Rees

1 January 2020
Caryl Rees (spouse of Dai Rees)

Caryl  Rees , wife of David (Dai) Rees, died at home on January 1st 2020 in Los Angeles.  She is survived by Dai and daughter Ffiona. Caryl and Dai celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in August 2019.  Caryl was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in 2011.  Dai joined  Intelsat in 1976 and retired 1992.



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