Intelligence Loss


My father-in-law Donald F.B. “Jamie” Jameson passed away last week. He was — and forever will be — the center of my wife Peggy’s soul and, through her, a quietly influential part of my own life.

Today’s Washington Post has a fascinating and moving obituary, focusing largely on his career in the CIA and his work with prominent Soviet defectors. There’s a lot in there that I didn’t even know about him, and it’s an enlightening portrait of another era in world politics.

Despite the cloak-and-dagger reality of his career and the gravity of his work, however, Jamie was through it all a dreamer and a storyteller whose main objective in life seems to have been to perpetuate his own idyllic storybook childhood in his own children and in the world around him, despite incredible adversity.

Normal blogging will resume shortly. Lots still going on.



8 responses to “Intelligence Loss”

  1. Jorge Arango Avatar
    Jorge Arango

    Chris, so sorry to hear about your loss. Our condolences and best wishes to you, Peggy, and your family.

  2. Condolences aplenty, my man. This is only the more poignant for our having so very recently gotten to know Peggy better.

    Lots of love from far across the sea,

  3. Laura Merriman Avatar
    Laura Merriman


    You did Mr. Jameson justice with your kind words. He has a sweet face, and I am sure Peggy has his demeanor. Sorry for your loss, losing a parent is heartbreaking for Peggy, and you.

    Aunt Laurie

  4. Carol Lester Avatar
    Carol Lester

    Hello Chris,
    I am sorry to learn of the passing of Peggy’s dad. Please convey our condolences to her. I was at his table at your rehearsal dinner and he was a very fascinating man. I knew he had a very interesting background but of course he did not speak about it.
    I am sure this is hard for Peggy and you, too. You wrote a lovely tribute… I am sure he was pleased you are Peggy’s husband. Love, Aunt Carol

  5. Thanks to everyone who sent their good thoughts here and privately. It’s appreciated by all of us.

  6. Julian laverdiere Avatar
    Julian laverdiere

    Peggy’s father sounds like he was a fascinating man and the end of era, arguably a member of “the greatest generation”.
    Its no wonder Peggy and her brother are so whip smart.
    Please give my condolences to the two of them.
    sincerely – Julian

  7. Craig & Carina Avatar
    Craig & Carina

    rest in peace Mr. Jameson.
    Lovely to see the young photo. Probably the man he remembered himself to be inside.

    all our love,

  8. andrew patterson Avatar
    andrew patterson

    Goodness! I’ve just stumbled upon your notice. My father (Sam Patterson, Tetra Tech, Pasadena and Houston) and your father-in-law were very good friends. My father always spoke of “Jamie” fondly, with cheer in his voice when doing so. Mr. Jameson was a sweet man. I remember well when he invited me to the Cosmos Club for lunch, upon my arrival in Washington, D.C. while conducting ground advance for G.H.W. Bush. He kindly explained to me the ways of Washington. A fantastic briefing! Later, he had an “oil deal” for me to consider, which was quite a deal – massive truck convoys crossing over land to an unnamed port, where they were loaded for distant refineries. Later, there were dinners, and one at my house – with stories that always fascinated me. After my father died, I called Jamie and tried to get together for dinner, but he informed me that he’d lost his short term memory, due to a recent stroke, and regretted that he wouldn’t remember the call, except for the notes he was taking. We tried anyway, and hoped we could get together, one last time, but alas.

    Mr. Jameson represents, in my mind, that GREAT GENERATION of patriotic Americans (their values, the Great Depression, and World War II tempered them) who quietly built, fought for, and defended our wonderful country, in so many unnamed ways. He was a fine gentlemen, always!

    He is and will continue to be missed!

    Best regards,

    Andrew Patterson

    NB: Dad’s Obituary