Maryann Holcomb-Dziennik, medical billing specialist

Maryann T. Holcomb-Dziennik, a retired medical billing specialist and foster mother to 33 babies, died of breast cancer Dec. 13 at her Essex home. She was 64.

Born Maryann Theresa Bohland in Baltimore and raised in Canton, she was a 1965 Patterson High School graduate.

As her own children grew up, Mrs. Holcomb-Dziennik worked with Catholic Charities and became a foster mother to 33 babies.

"She made everyone feel loved and welcome in her home," said her son, Tom Holcomb of Baltimore. "She had a gift for settling down even the most challenging babies. She also took care of anyone who was alone and in need of company. The house was a revolving door. People would stop in and stay for a while and then leave."

Mrs. Holcomb-Dziennik had worked as a medical billing specialist at Villa Maria in Timonium.

"Her spirit and kindness to clients was just amazing," said Susan Gilmore, Villa Maria's senior financial manager. "She had an incredible work ethic."

Mrs. Holcomb-Dziennik coached her daughter's team at the Essex Recreation League in the 1980s. She was also an Alpine Gardens Home Association board member. She had written a weekly neighborhood news for the Essex Times about 25 years ago.

She also organized and delivered food and presents to families at Christmas time. She vacationed in Ocean City and wagered at Dover Downs and Delaware Park. She was also a fan of bingo scratch-offs. A baker, she made pound cakes for family and friends.

She followed sports, including the Orioles, Baltimore Colts and Ravens. "She could not bring herself to call the Colts by name anymore," her son said. "She called them 'the team from Indianapolis.'"

In addition to her son, survivors include her husband of 11 years, Robert F. Dziennik; two daughters, Lori Valdivia and Amy Thomas, both of Baltimore; a stepson, Steve Dziennik of Harleysville, Pa.; a stepdaughter, Karen Cimino of Baltimore; three brothers, Ray Lurz of Ocean Pines, Bo Lurz of Baltimore and Clyde McWilliams of Bel Air; three sisters, Betty Mitchell of Ocean Pines, Joyce Wingate of Ocean Pines and Deniese Baslik of Baltimore; and 10 grandchildren. Her husband of 28 years, Thomas Holcomb, died in 1994.

A Mass was offered Saturday at St. Clare's Roman Catholic Church, where she was a member.

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