main banner

Monday, August 12, 2013

Farewell, 'Mr. Annandale'

Photo from the Everly-Wheatley Funeral Home.
Irving La’Rue Denton, known as “Mr. Annandale” for his knowledge of the history of this area, passed away July 26, 2013, at age 92.

According to an obituary in the Washington Post, Irv Denton spent 30 years in the Air Force, serving in World War II, the Korean War, and Vietnam War. He was also an accounting instructor at George Mason University, professor emeritus at Northern Virginia Community College, former head of the Annandale Chamber of Commerce, and longtime member of the First Christian Church in Falls Church.

An extensive interview of Denton conducted in 2005 as part of an oral history project is published on the “A Look Back at the Braddock District” website. 

In the interview, Denton recalls moving to Annandale in 1967 and commuting to his job at the Pentagon on a closely wooded, two-lane Columbia Pike. He got involved in the community when the Annandale Chamber of Commerce put on the first annual parade in 1983 to commemorate the Annandale tricentennial.

For a time beginning in the late 1980s, Denton wrote a column on the community’s history for a local newspaper. He answered questions from the public, such as who was John Marr? (a confederate soldier who became the first casualty in Northern Virginia in the Civil War), and wasn’t there an anti-aircraft missile installation in Annandale? (it was on property leased from the Oliver farm on Thornton Street at Gallows Road).

Among other historical topics Denton addresses in the interview: the Annandale cattle drive, the privately owned water plant in Annandale with 35,000 customers, and the evolution of Little River Turnpike from a trail called Buffalo Trace to one of the area’s first toll roads.

Denton lived in Sleepy Hollow Woods for 25 years then moved to Chatelain Village, which is now part of Broyhill Crest, and later to a retirement home.

Funeral services for Denton were held Aug. 10 at the First Christian Church, and he was buried at Arlington National Cemetery. He is survived by his wife, Helen, a son, daughter, and four grandchildren.

1 comment:

  1. Irv also gave great amounts of time and energy to support ACCA--the Annandale Christian Community for Action in its cooperative charitable activities for the needy and working poor.