Elizabeth McDowell Diffie, July 25, 1957 – July 20, 2023
Elizabeth (Libby) McDowell Diffie passed peacefully at her home in Vienna, Virginia on July 20, after a nearly six-year battle with metastatic breast cancer. Libby was born into a Navy family in Pensacola, Florida, and lived on both US coasts during her father’s service career. She was a proud graduate of Fairfax High School (1975), Fairfax, Virginia; and George Mason University (1979). Libby married into and built another Navy family, living mainly in the mid-Atlantic, and with tours in Belgium and France. She was a dedicated teacher and a ferocious advocate of the liberating power of quality education for all children. She taught for many years at Churchill Road Elementary in McLean – mainly first and second grades – and she influenced the lives of thousands in the McLean community. Her passion was nurturing children, teaching them to read and think and be kind, and engaging their parents in their reading and learning journeys. Libby was pre-deceased by her father, Captain Curtis G. McDowell, US Navy, and her son, Corporal Samuel Bush Diffie, US Marine Corps. She is survived by her husband, Craig; her son Douglas (Molly, Whitney Elizabeth, Jack McDowell); her mother, Anna Bush McDowell; her sister, Debbie McDowell Trusevich; and her brother, Curtis G. McDowell. A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m., Saturday, September 30, at the McLean Baptist Church in McLean, Virginia. Libby will be inurned at Arlington National Cemetery with her father and son on a date in 2024. In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation or the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.