- The Washington Times - Friday, January 7, 2005

Thomas Pacl, a retired National Security Agency employee and longtime resident of the District, died Dec. 4 at George Washington University Hospital of complications from a lung disease. He was 78.

Born in Scottsbluff, Neb., Mr. Pacl grew up in Denver. When he was 17, he joined the Army Specialized Training Program and studied engineering at New York University during World War II.

In 1950, he graduated with a degree in Germanic languages from George Washington University. He earned a certificate in comparative Slavic languages at the University of Paris in 1952. He loved languages and comparative grammar and studied them throughout his life.

In the early 1950s, he formed a recreational scuba-diving club, which thrived for several years and later became part of the NSA’s recreation department.

Mr. Pacl, who had been interested in letter-press printing since he was in junior high school, ran a home print shop specializing in original and artistic works. He also worked for the Greenbelt News Review.

He organized the Rosebud Ragtime Band in the 1970s. After Mr. Pacl retired from the NSA in 1981, the band grew to become the Rosebud Musical Theater Company, a troupe featuring music, song and stories of turn-of-the-century music and early American musical theater. The company, now under other leadership, still performs in the D.C. area.

His other musical interests included the Northern Virginia Ragtime Society, Potomac River Jazz Club and the Friday Morning Music Club.

Mr. Pacl was a longtime member of the Paint Branch Unitarian Universalist Church in Adelphi, Md. He also belonged to the Dupont Circle Citizens’ Association and the Russian Club.

He is survived by his wife of 56 years, Mildred; a son, David Pacl of Ocean City; a brother, Lawrence Pacl of Hermitage, Tenn.; a sister, Marguerite McIntyre of Hulbert, Okla.; and two grandchildren.

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