- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Thomas Sutherland Pendergast, a retired mechanical engineer and antique car enthusiast, died April 21 of cancer at the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville. He was 78.

Mr. Pendergast was born July 13, 1927, in Kitchener, Ontario. He graduated from Ohio State University in 1954 with a degree in mechanical engineering.

Mr. Pendergast served in the Navy as a radar and radio technician during the end of World War II and as a technician during the Korean War.

After the Korean War and his college graduation, Mr. Pendergast worked for the aviation-parts manufacturer Jack & Heintz Inc. in Cleveland.

In 1958, he transferred to the company’s Washington-area office, which was based at National Airport, and worked as a service and sales engineer.

Mr. Pendergast also worked for the global manufacturing and service company Thompson Ramo Wooldridge, which today is TRW Inc. He retired from Solar Turbines, a division of Caterpillar Inc., in 1993, but continued to work for the company as a consultant.

Mr. Pendergast was a member of the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Club and the Mercedes Club of America and served as a technical consultant for analyzing problems with the 810 and 812 Cord automobiles. He was a life member of the National Rifle Association and a member of the Rappahannock County Republican Committee.

Mr. Pendergast moved to Washington, Va., in 1993. His favorite hobbies were metal fabrication and machine tooling. He created a miniature Gatling gun from stock metal and loved old Mercedes-Benzes and antique, classic automobiles, which he collected and restored. He also loved nature and the outdoors.

Survivors include his wife of 55 years, Erma Lucille Pendergast of Washington, Va.

Online condolences can be sent to www.foundandsons.com.

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