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Obituary of Sara Sue Lucas
Sara Sue Lucas, age 79, of Ashburn, Virginia passed away peacefully on Thursday, September 19, 2019 at home in Ashburn, Virginia.
Memorial services will be held at Arlington National Cemetery in the coming months. We are waiting for Arlington National Cemetery to schedule. Adams-Green Funeral Home will be handling all arrangements.
Sara was born in Frankfort, Indiana to Charles and Elizabeth Lewis Stewart on February 17, 1940. She attended Frankfort High School, graduating in 1958 as a member of the National Honor Society and of Evola Sorority. Sara was active in Girl Scouts all during her high school days and was a scout leader during the summer months. In 1958 she entered Ball State University and pledged to Pi Beta Phi Sorority. She graduated in 1963 with a BS degree in American History. While in college she was a member of the student senate and was active in the college Young Republicans Club. She was honored by Pi Beta Phi in her senior year as the outstanding member of the sorority.
She met her husband James Walter Lucas in high school in 1957 and they were married in 1962, while in college. They lost a daughter to an uncommon birth defect shortly after birth. After, she and her husband Jim graduated from college in 1963, Sara worked at the University Book store while Jim finished a master’s degree in political science waiting to enter into active duty with the US Air Force (USAF) in 1965. They spent a year in San Angelo, Texas for Jim’s initial military officers training and four years in Darmstadt, Germany where Sara worked as a personnel officer for the US Army’s European newspaper, Stars and Stripes. Their daughter Catherine (Cate) was born in the USAF hospital in Wiesbaden and they all returned to the US just in time to see Neil Armstrong walk on the moon in 1969.
Sara and Jim spent the following year in Washington, DC, where Jim was a student at the Defense Intelligence College, and then served a year in Vietnam and Thailand. During this time, Sara bunked out to assist her mother – after the loss of Sara’s stepfather who died three days before Jim left for Southeast Asia. Sara and Jim moved back to Washington on his return and Sara lasted at home with Cate for about three years before wives’ clubs, neighborhood tennis, and playground duty became intolerable pastimes. She worked as a substitute teacher (K-3) for four years and subsequently served for a year as the Director of Youth Activities at Bolling Air Force Base in downtown DC. She was unable to obtain professional employment because of Jim's military status - he was subject to worldwide assignment.
Jim left active service in early 1977 for duty as a senior civilian at the CIA. Sara spent a year in the yard, garden, and orchard of a grand house in Potomac, Maryland. Jim continued weekend duty with the USAF reserve while Sara started to work at CIA in September 1978, in a clerical position just to get a foot in the door and to have something to talk about with Jim other than Cate's braces or planting pachysandra. Sara’s initial assignment was as a GS4 clerk - jobs were graded 1 through 15 -- in the Telephone Branch of the Office of Communications in the Directorate of Administration. The Company (CIA) was composed of four Directorates, the other three being Intelligence, Science and Technology, and Operations.
As a career Intelligence Officer at CIA, Sara rose from GS4 to GS15 in less than 12 years and received outstanding performance awards each year for 20 years.
Specifically, her assignments at CIA were as follows:
- Clerk: England, Ireland, Scotland; Office of Central Reference, Directorate of Intelligence, where folks wrote biographies, classified and open source, of world leaders and emerging personalities.
- Document Analyst in the same office; a professional vice clerical position.
- Senior Duty Officer, Operations Center; managing a rotating 12-hour shift of about 30 clericals and analysts to monitor worldwide threats to US and/or international security. Liaison with other government watch centers, including the White House Situation Room. ·
- CIA Liaison Officer, National Military Command Center, Pentagon; [CIA home base for this and all subsequent jobs, Office of the Director (DCl)]. Coordinated joint reports, provided sole source CIA classified information to military departments.
- Assistant to the National Intelligence Officer (NIO), East Asia and Narcotics. Managed the office and the process of producing National Intelligence Estimates (NIEs) on Asia - east of the Ural Mountains and across the Pacific.
- Executive Officer, National Intelligence Council. Managed the office and NIE production efforts of 23 NIOs. Ensured the estimates process provided each agency of the US Intelligence Community an equal voice in the production of estimates.
- Operations Officer for two years for a classified national intelligence program.
- Chief of Staff in the CIA Counter Narcotics Center, separately, of the Community Coordination Group and the Linear Operations Staff.
- Loaned Executive, Combined Federal Campaign.
- Chief of Staff, Center for the Study of Intelligence.
- Retired as a senior executive, October 1997.
Sara was a fantastic wife to Jim for 58 years and phenomenal mother, mentor and guide to Cate. She was also a person you could trust, a fiercely loyal friend to many and enemy to none. She was a detailed planner and organizer, the sparkplug that kept things going for the family; she had a keen analytical mind and was an outstanding editor and writer.
In addition to her accomplished career, Sara enjoyed:
- Reading British mysteries her favorite author was Patrick O’Brien - and she always read the last chapter first to see how the writer “built the story”.
- Watching professional football games – hoping the Redskins would go to the Super Bowl in this century.
- Playing tennis, swimming, hiking, and canoeing.
- Giving gifts to others, family and friends – she could navigate the internet, especially Amazon like no other.
- Vacationing at Sandbridge Beach and Colonial Williamsburg.
- Taking courses in art history and archaeology – her secret passions.
- Visiting her daughter and watching her granddaughter’s soccer games and wind ensemble concerts.
- Completing crossword puzzles in the Washington Times, and Washington Post on Sundays before NFL Games aired.
- Touring historical sites in and around the Washington, DC area – especially Civil War battlefields.
- Dining in restaurants – Clyde’s at Willow Creek was one of her favorites as well as various establishments in Middleburg, Virginia.
- Preparing holiday meals for family and friends – Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years were her favorites until she passed the task on to Cate after she married Dave in 2000.
- Monitoring international news and domestic political events on her favorite station Fox News.
Sara left us too soon. She is survived by her loving husband Brigadier General James Walter Lucas, USAF Retired of Ashburn, Virginia; her daughter Catherine Lucas Fulkerson, son-in-law John David Fulkerson; and granddaughter Sara Anne Fulkerson of Reston, VA.
I lieu of flowers, the family requested that you donate to one of the following foundations in the name of Sara S. Lucas. Both were near and dear to her heart.
Pi Beta Phi Foundation - https://pibetaphifoundation.org/
Colonial Williamsburg Foundation - https://www.history.org/foundation/development/Fund/devfund.cfm