RECTORTOWN, Va. -- Elizabeth Ann Swift Cronin, one of two women among the 52 people held hostage for 444 days after the takeover of the US Embassy in Tehran in 1979, died Friday in a horseback riding accident. She was 63.
Mrs. Cronin was the ranking political officer at the embassy when Iranian students angered by American policies seized the compound. She and Kathryn Koob, then director of the Iran-American Society, were kept largely separated from the 50 men also taken captive.
After her release in January 1981, she continued her State Department career with postings in Greece, Jamaica, and London and served as a deputy assistant secretary of state for overseas citizens services. She retired in 1995.
In addition to her husband of 10 years, she leaves two stepsons.