Victims’ stories, told by loved ones they left behind

The stories of some of those who died in the Navy Yard:


Martin Bodrog

  • Bodrog, 54, of Annandale, Va., lived in North Andover, Mass., for several years as a child and “took great pleasure in following his beloved Boston Bruins” throughout his life, according to a family statement and a longtime friend.

  • The friend, Jeffrey Prowse, said in a phone interview from the family home in Virginia that he believed Bodrog lived in Massachusetts from the time when he was about 8 years old into adolescence.

  • “It was during those formative years, when you picked your team, and that’s it,” Prowse said.

  • He said Bodrog’s family was touched by the support they have received and they will donate financial contributions to the Boston Bruins Foundation, the team’s charitable arm.

  • Bodrog graduated from the US Naval Academy in 1981 and served as a surface warfare officer during a naval career that spanned 22 years, the family statement said. He leaves his wife of 25 years, Melanie, and as well as three daughters, Isabel, 23, Sophie,17, and Rita, 16.

  • “A humble, loving father and neighbor, Marty could frequently be seen in all types of weather, even post-blizzard bitter cold, in shorts and his trademark Boston Bruins jersey, walking his dog and helping shovel all the driveways of his elderly neighbors,” the statement said.

  • “Marty was a source of great inspiration to his family and friends – those of us that were we lucky enough to know Marty are better people for it.”

Michael Arnold

  • Arnold, 59, of Lorton, Va., was a Navy veteran and avid pilot who was building a light airplane at his home, said his uncle, Steve Hunter.

  • Hunter said his nephew retired from the Navy as a commander or lieutenant commander and had previously been stationed at Pearl Harbor in Hawaii. He worked at the Navy Yard on a team that designed vessels such as the USS Makin Island, a Wasp-class amphibious assault ship used by the Marine Corps.

  • Arnold and his wife, Jolanda, had been married for more than 30 years, Hunter said. They had two grown sons, Eric and Christopher.

Arthur Daniels

  • Arthur Daniels, 51, of Washington, was a handyman working for a furniture contractor who just happened to be moving and installing furniture at the Navy Yard on Monday when the shooting began. He was the father of five children and the grandfather of nine.

  • Priscilla Daniels, 46, told The Washington Post she had kissed her husband that morning and teased that he should stay in bed because it was raining.

  • ‘‘I don’t know why they shot him,’’ she said. ‘‘He was a good father and hard worker.’’

  • Every year, it was Arthur Daniels who cooked Thanksgiving dinner for the family. On weekends, he spent time washing and polishing his white Crown Victoria.

  • Priscilla Daniels said she and her husband loved going out on the town with their shoes shined and hair done, holding hands. They were high school sweethearts, and all four of their sons were named after Arthur Daniels.

  • His death comes four years after the death of their 14-year-old son Arthur A. Daniels, who was shot and killed on a Washington street.

  • ‘‘My husband was the man I loved through all the tragedy,’’ Priscilla Daniels said. ‘‘I can’t believe this is happening again.’’

  • Arthur Daniels was the family’s breadwinner. Washington Mayor Vincent Gray called Priscilla Daniels on Tuesday to offer condolences and asked if there was any life insurance, but the answer was no. The mayor said he would send a staff member to the house to discuss the family’s finances.

Sylvia Frasier

  • Frasier, 53, of Waldorf, Md., had worked at Naval Sea Systems Command as an information assurance manager since 2000, according to a LinkedIn profile in her name.

  • Frasier studied at Strayer University, earning a bachelor of science in computer information systems in 2000 and a master’s in information systems in 2002. Her duties at NAVSEA included providing policy and guidance on network security, and assuring that all computer systems operated by the headquarters met Department of Navy and Department of Defense requirements.

  • She also led efforts ‘‘to establish and implement procedures to investigate security violations or incidents,’’ according to the profile.

  • Her brother, James Frasier, declined comment Monday night.


Kathleen Gaarde

  • Gaarde, 63, of Woodbridge, Va., was a financial analyst who supported the organization responsible for the shipyards, her husband, Douglass, wrote in an e-mail Tuesday.

  • Douglass Gaarde declined to speak but wrote that he was unable to sleep.

  • ‘‘Today my life partner of 42 years (38 of them married) was taken from me, my grown son and daughter, and friends,’’ he wrote. ‘‘We were just starting to plan our retirement activities and now none of that matters. It hasn’t fully sunk in yet but I know I already dearly miss her.’’


John Roger Johnson

  • The logistics analyst , 73, was perhaps most notorious for his bear hugs, his daughter said.

  • ‘‘Rib-crunchers,’’ Megan Johnson said with a laugh as she remembered her dad Tuesday. ‘‘You didn’t have to pay for a chiropractor.’’

  • The Derwood, Md., man — the oldest of the victims in Monday’s shootings — graduated from Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Wash. He studied mathematics, but he went into the field of reliability engineering, said Megan Johnson, third-youngest of his four daughters.

  • Most recently, Johnson worked with TWD & Associates Inc., where co-workers knew him as ‘‘J.J.’’

  • Johnson would have celebrated his 74th birthday on Oct. 7. He also leaves his wife of more than eight years, Judy, and four stepchildren.


Frank Kohler

  • Kohler, 50, was a past president of the Rotary Club in Lexington Park, Md. As such, he proudly held the title of ‘‘King Oyster’’ at the annual festival celebrating the region’s signature bivalve the third weekend of each October.

  • ‘‘He walks around with a crown and robe and gives out candy,’’ said Bob Allen, Kohler’s former boss at Lockheed Martin in southern Maryland.

  • The married father of two college-age daughters had driven up to the Washington Navy Yard for a meeting Monday when the shootings occurred, friends told Allen.

  • Kohler was working for Information Concepts in Management LLC, a subcontractor of TWD & Associates Inc.


Mary Knight

  • The information technology specialist , 51, of Reston, Va., had recently received a big promotion and witnessed the marriage of her older daughter, her mother said.

  • Knight was born in Germany, where her father, a Green Beret instructor who did a tour in Vietnam, was stationed.

  • Liliana DeLorenzo, 76, said her daughter attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

  • Knight, the oldest of three children, had recently been promoted at work to GS 15 — the top civil service pay grade, her mother said. Last month, her older daughter, Nicole, 25, married a soldier.

Vishnu Pandit

  • The marine engineer and naval architect , 61, was a hard-working Indian immigrant, known for his devotion to family, community, and his 30-year civilian Navy career.

  • ‘‘He was very dedicated to improving the performance of naval ships and systems,’’ longtime friend M. Nuns Jain said Tuesday outside the North Potomac, Md., home where Pandit’s family privately mourned. ‘‘The only saving grace in this horrible incident is that he died doing what he loved the most in the service of his nation.’’

  • Jain said Pandit, a Mumbai native, earned a bachelor’s degree in marine engineering in India in 1973 before coming to America and earning a degree in naval architecture from the University of Michigan.

  • Married to his wife, Anjali, since 1978, Pandit had two sons and a granddaughter, Jain said.

Kenneth Proctor

  • Proctor, 46, worked as a civilian utilities foreman at the Navy Yard, his ex-wife, Evelyn Proctor, said. He spent 22 years working for the federal government, she said.

  • The Waldorf, Md., woman spoke to Kenneth early Monday morning before he left for work at the Navy Yard. The high school sweethearts talked every day, even after they divorced this year after 19 years of marriage.

  • She was in shock about her ex-husband’s death.

  • ‘‘He just went in there in the morning for breakfast,’’ Proctor said of the building where the shooting took place.

Gerald L. Read

  • Read’s son-in-law, Michael Giffin, said his family was not ready to speak yet about the death of the 58-year old from Alexandria, Va.

  • ‘‘We’re still trying to gather our thoughts,’’ said Giffin.

Richard Michael Ridgell

  • Ridgell, 52, was a passionate protector, both in his security work and in the way he treated his daughters during game-day trips to M&T Field to root for his beloved Baltimore Ravens.

  • ‘‘He was all about protecting us,’’ said daughter Megan outside her mother’s Westminster home. She remembered her father guardedly eyeing other spectators as they climbed to their upper-tier seats.

  • Ridgell was working for a private security contractor at the Washington Navy Yard.

Globe staff reporter Travis Andersen contributed to this report. Material from the Associated Press was also used.
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