Robert Helyer Thayer


Robert Helyer Thayer

Southborough, Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA
Death 26 Jan 1984 (aged 82)
Washington, District of Columbia, District of Columbia, USA
Burial Southborough, Worcester County, Massachusetts, USA
Plot Section 1B, Lot S
Memorial ID 18081555 View Source

Parents: Rev. William Greenough and Violet (Otis) Thayer. Husband of Virginia (Pratt) Thayer. Married: 1926.

Thayer, Robert Helyer (1901-1984) — Born September 22, 1901. U.S. Minister to Romania, 1955.

Robert Helyer Thayer (22 September 1901 - 26 January 1984) was an American lawyer, naval officer and diplomat.

Early life

Thayer was born in Southborough, Massachusetts. He studied for degrees from Amherst College and Harvard University.

Legal career

Thayer practiced law in New York City under Gen William Joseph Donovan.

Thayer assisted Charles Lindbergh's lead lawyer, Col. Henry S. Breckinridge on the famous Lindbergh kidnapping case in 1932, staying at the Charles A Lindbergh residence in Hopewell, NJ, until the body of the child was found on 12 May 1932. Bruno Richard Hauptmann was executed for this crime in 1936.

Naval career

During World War II, Thayer was commissioned in the US Navy. He was an intelligence officer in the South Pacific early in the war and then went to Europe, where he took part in the invasions of Normandy and southern France. He returned to the Pacific in time for the invasion of the Philippines.

Diplomatic career

In 1945, he was an assistant to John Foster Dulles, who became secretary of state in the Eisenhower administration, at the organizing conference of the United Nations at San Francisco.

In 1950, he began his formal career in diplomacy, as an assistant to the US Ambassador to France. From 1955 endash 1958, US minister to Romania and then went to the State Department as assistant secretary for educational and cultural affairs.

Later life

Thayer was appointed a trustee of the National Trust for Historic Preservation from 1966 and was vice-chairman from 1975 - 1977.

He died in Washington DC on 26 January, 1984 of leukemia.

Personal life

He married Virginia Pratt (1905 - 1979) in 1926. She was the daughter of lawyer, financier and philanthropist John Teele Pratt and Congresswoman Ruth Baker Pratt.

They had three children:

1. Robert H. Thayer, Jr.
2. Stephen Badger Thayer
3. Sally Sears Thayer


"Age Quod Agis"

Family Members



In their memory
Plant Memorial Trees

Sponsored by Ancestry