Michael Hogan Styles

By Matt Schudel Washington Post Staff Writer Sunday, April 9, 2006

Michael Hogan Styles

Michael Hogan Styles, 79, who led sensitive negotiations concerning international airline
rights as director of what was the State Department's Office of Aviation, died April 5 of
lymphoma at Reston Hospital Center. He lived in Fairfax Station.

Mr. Styles joined the State Department in 1949 and became a Foreign Service officer
five years later. He was stationed at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo from 1954 to 1959.
Beginning in 1960, he worked in the State Department's old Office of Aviation, where he
played a major role in removing barriers that had hampered U.S. airline companies
operating overseas. As the office's director, Mr. Styles led negotiations with many
countries, including Great Britain, Italy, Israel, Mexico, Jamaica and Canada. In 1973, he
helped the United States reach an accord with the Soviet Union to increase airline traffic
between the two countries.

He was cited by Aviation Week Space Technology magazine for his courage and
perception in guiding the negotiations that built the country's international aviation policy.
He also received the Meritorious Honor Award and Superior Honor Award from the
State Department.

Mr. Styles, who grew up overseas in a diplomatic household, was descended from two
old Falls Church families. The Mary Riley Styles Public Library in Falls Church is named
for his grandmother.

He was born in Durban, South Africa, where his father was stationed as U.S. vice consul.
As a boy, Mr. Styles accompanied his father, Francis Holmes Styles, to consular posts in
Belgium, Mexico, Canada and Ireland. In 1943, when he was 16, Mr. Styles made a
treacherous flight on a military plane out of Ireland, by way of Scotland and Iceland,
with entertainer Jack Benny and his wife, actress Mary Livingston. Mr. Styles moved to his
grandparents' home in Falls Church and rode a trolley to the old
Western High School
in Washington, from which he graduated in 1944. He was a 1947 graduate of the
University of Virginia, where he was a member of the Raven Society, and received a
master's degree in international relations from U-Va. in 1949. He did further studies in
international economics at Yale University.

After retiring from the State Department in 1979, Mr. Styles formed a consulting company,
M.H. Styles Associates Inc., representing international aviation interests. He opened the
Washington office of the International Air Transport Association and served as its
regional director. He retired in 1989.

He was a founding member of the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at George Mason
University and served as president, vice president and secretary of its board of directors.
He taught courses at the institute on U.S. and world history.

He enjoyed vegetable gardening and reading and was secretary and treasurer of the
Holly Forest Homes Association in Fairfax Station. He was also president of the
International Aviation Club.

In his later years, Mr. Styles wrote a biography of his adventurous
great-great-great-grandfather, Captain Hogan: Sailor, Merchant, Diplomat on Six
Continents (2003). For research on the book, he traveled to Australia, Ireland and South

His marriages to Nancy Howard Styles and Anne Gosnell Duff Styles ended in divorce.

Survivors include his wife of 25 years, Page Davis Styles of Fairfax Station; two children
from his first marriage, Kathleen M. Styles of Falls Church and Thomas Styles of Phoenix;
a stepson, David S. Trivett of Woodbridge; a brother; a sister; and four grandchildren.