ACHILLES GORDON ALAN ACHILLES, Esquire A long-time resident of Washington, DC, Mr. Achilles passed away September 1, 2012. Born in Pittsburgh, PA, he excelled in athletics, academics and leadership from an early age; underscoring a diligent and talented life's journey. Although a star athlete at Allegheny High School as pitcher for their championship baseball team; his four year scholarship to the University of Florida was based upon his scoring feats in basketball, as well as Captain and Pittsburgh's most-valuable player designation; coupled with National Honor Society and Senior Class President achievements. After transferring to the University of Pennsylvania his sophomore year, and while a serious student, member of a fraternity as well as Friar Society; he again excelled in athletics. During his three years of varsity baseball he was an accomplished infielder. However it was his much photographed grand slam homerun the first time at bat which heralded an ability often repeated; as reported in the New York Times. Upon graduation from Penn. with a B.A. in International Relations, the summer with the San Francisco Giants, was followed by several years living in France and Switzerland; attending the University of Geneva for graduate studies. His return to the USA with his then-wife Francoise, allowed him to obtain his Juris Doctorate from American University, Wash- ington, DC. As an attorney with the Criminal Division, Department of Justice during the second Administration of President Richard Nixon, he was proud of their accomplishments; as he also appreciated the many years he worked on Capitol Hill as a Legislative Attorney. He valued the many Congressmen he knew; especially those with whom he played competitive tennis. His heroes were Senator Robert Byrd; Thomas Jefferson as well as literary figures Goethe, Thomas Mann, Victor Hugo, and William Shakespeare, who informed his values and poetic bent. Gordon was a popular conversationalist; well read, never at a loss for words; whose avocation as writer, poet, and diarist were dear to him. An ardent Francophile, returning to France often, but a "Georgetowner" at heart; Gordon was well known simply by his presence, perpetual suntan and broad smile. Gordon is survived by all who knew him socially or within his numerous affiliations; as well as his best friend of thirty years, Carole Lynn Franks; and his brother, Norman Lee Achilles, both of Washington, DC. His funeral service will be Saturday, September 22, 2012, 2 p.m., St. John's Episcopal Church, Georgetown Parish, 3240 O Street, N.W., Washington, DC.His funeral service will be Saturday, September 22, 2012, 2 p.m., St. John's Episcopal Church, Georgetown Parish, 3240 O Street, N.W., Washington, DC.
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Published in The Washington Post on Sept. 16, 2012