Wiley T. Buchanan Jr., one of the most visible U.S. chiefs of protocol in the history of that office and a former ambassador to Austria and Luxembourg, has died at a nursing home. He had Alzheimer's disease.
A native of Texas, Buchanan began his government career during World War II with the War Production Board. He was an official of the old National Production Authority from 1950 to 1952.
Buchanan, 72, a Texas cotton, lumber and oil heir, who contributed heavily to the 1952 presidential campaign of Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower, was appointed minister to Luxembourg in 1953 and promoted to ambassador two years later. He held that post until becoming protocol chief in 1957, 20 years after the office was created to assist the international diplomats stationed in the United States. He resigned from that post in 1961 and served as ambassador to Austria from 1975 to 1977.
Buchanan, who also contributed to Richard M. Nixon's presidential campaigns, was the author of the 1964 book, "Red Carpet at the White House," which told of his days as protocol chief. He died Sunday.