|Birth: ||Nov. 14, 1907|
District of Columbia
District Of Columbia, USA
|Death: ||Jun. 2, 1992|
Prince George's County
Leonard Charles Dorr was known by several names to his friends and family. Most of us knew him as "Dap", a reference to the "dapper" way he was known to dress in his youthful days before the war. Some of his friends in the auto business around Washington DC called him Leon or just Lee. His brother Bill called him Leonard. I think he referred to himself in semi-formal occasions as L.C Dorr, which more than once caused his name to be recorded as Elsie Dorr. To me, he was always Uncle Dap.
He was born in 1907 to Leonard, Sr. and Catherine Dorr, the oldest of six siblings, including brothers Andrew, Gus, and Bill, and two sisters, Dorothy and Gertrude.
As a youth, Leon spent a good deal of his time playing the "inner city" sports of the day… swimming, some basketball, and a whole lot of tennis. He was a contemporary and tennis partner of local tennis star and journalist Bob Considine.
Early on, Leon worked for a while in a meat packing house, probably the S&K (EssKay) company. He learned a quite a bit about meat and the whole business, and as a result I don't believe anyone was served a bad cut of meat at his dinner table… ever!
Prior to WWII, he spent his time as a young motorcycle courier at the Pentagon. He was one of a small cadre of riders who carried military dispatches between offices throughout the huge structure on their Indian cycles. I believe it was those days of riding motorcycles and working on them with friends in the family garage that gave him a lifelong appreciation of all things automotive and mechanical. Later, he graduated to cars when he was given a used Model T, which he shared with his brothers. Leon had watched the automobile become more and more popular, and he literally grew up with cars.
By the time I met my Uncle Dap, it was 1958 and I was 5 years old. He had retired from working at the Pentagon, where he had been a draftsman. During his wartime stint there, among other things, he had drawn the silhouettes of Axis aircraft for use in training gunners to spot enemy planes, and he'd also penned two postage stamps.
Retirement gave him the time to indulge his interests in cars. His early focus was on the classic cars of the 1930s and early 1940s. He spent most of his later retirement years buying and selling used cars, both European and American, tinkering with them and selling them on the weekends. He loved his one-man car business, and it left his schedule flexible to be at home for dinner every evening. I learned a good deal about cars while watching him, and I made a reasonable amount of "pocket" money from washing and cleaning cars for him all thru my grade school years.
Dap had grown up in the Anacostia area of Washington DC, but made his move to the Maryland suburbs in the early 1950s with his wife Margaret and daughter Mary K. From their home, they watched together as the DC area changed through the 50s, 60s, and 70s. Through the years, besides cars, Dap enjoyed watching baseball, keeping up on the local news, following politics, visiting with local family, reminiscing about the early Washington area he knew, and frequent trips to the Maryland and Delaware beaches.
Fort Lincoln Cemetery
Prince George's County
Created by: Conrad Drum
Record added: Nov 28, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 81160615