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Obituary: Clifton Elmer Howard

— Clifton Elmer Howard died on Aug. 1, 2012 while being treated for congestive heart failure at Fauquier Health Rehabilitation & Nursing Center located at Warrenton, Va. He was 92 years old.

Lifelong Alexandria resident, Cliff was born on April 22, 1920 at the family residence located at 113 S. Patrick St. He graduated from George Washington High School in 1939 and entered the U.S. Army as a rifleman in 1944. He returned to Alexandria after being honorably discharged from the army as a disabled veteran in 1945. Cliff remained at 113 S. Patrick St. until he married Margaret Miller in 1962 and the newlyweds moved to 2604 Davis Ave. in the Braddock Heights neighborhood of his beloved City of Alexandria.

Cliff worked as a clerk for the Federal Government and retired after over 40 years of service.

The loving couple remained together on Davis Avenue until the late ‘90s, when Margaret, who was suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, required around the clock care that Cliff was unable to provide. With heavy heart, Cliff moved Margaret into Woodbine Nursing Home, but did not abandon her there; he spent the majority of every day with her until her death on June 30, 1999.

Cliff remained in Alexandria for several more years, until he moved to Amissville to live with his step daughter Carol Metz.

Cliff was reluctant to leave Alexandria. His family had first arrived there in 1737. Howard Street was named after his family and Minnie Howard Elementary (now the 9th grade annex for T.C. Williams High School, but still bearing her name) was named after his grandmother, a tireless social worker and children's advocate at the turn of the last century. Like his father before him, Cliff had been a member of the Alexandria Harmonizers Barber Shop Chorus. He was a member of the Odd fellows Potomac Lodge 38 and an active member of Westminster Presbyterian Church on Cameron Mills Road.

Cliff moved into Fauquier Health Rehabilitation and Nursing Center in 2011 and his wit and upbeat attitude made him an instant hit with the staff. At the end of July 2012, he checked into the adjacent hospital to be treated for congestive heart failure. He returned to the Nursing Center July 31 and died on Aug. 1.

Clifton was predeceased by his parents William and Katherine Howard, his brother Nelson Howard, sister in law Oceola Howard and his wife Margaret Howard.

Clifton is survived by his nephew Phillip Howard of Kissimmee, Fla., his step daughters Carol Metz of Amissville, Va. and Linda Hutchison of Colorado Springs, Colo. He is also survived by grandchildren John Metz of Marshal, Virginia, Julie Roberts of Amissville, Paul "Tony" Allen of Vail, Colo., David "Chris" Allen of Alexandria and seven great grandchildren.