Elkridge: For centenarian Stanley Marc, the Polish toast 'Sto lat!'

Long-time Elkridge resident Stanley J. Marc celebrated his 100th birthday Sept. 7. A party was held earlier this month bringing together over 160 family members and friends to pay tribute to this well-loved and respected centenarian.

Among the many well wishes from family and friends, Marc received written accolades from Archbishop William Lori, President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama, Governor Martin O'Malley, the Baltimore Orioles, and the Baltimore Ravens.

Monsignor Chester Mieczkowski and Father Gerard Bowen (former pastor at St Augustine) led the crowd in Polish to a song entitled "Sto Lat" (translating to literally mean "may you live a 100 years").

Then, everyone joined in for a rousing rendition of "Happy Birthday" and Marc's great grandkids helped blow out all those candles!

"Pop" (as most refer to him) was born in east Baltimore to Katherine (nee Klamut) and Joseph Marc. Both of his parents immigrated to America from Poland in the late 1800's and early 1900's, settling in Baltimore. One of seven children, Marc had two sisters (Helen and Martha) and four brothers (Casmir, Adam, Alfred and Melvin "Doc").

The family moved to Elkridge in the early 1940's to a 40-acre farm on Old Washington Road adjacent to the original Elkridge Elementary School (what is now the Elkridge Apartments across the street from the second Elkridge Elementary).

Casmir, Stanley, Adam and Martha eventually built their homes and raised their families on the property. Helen and her family lived around the corner on Montgomery Road; Alfred settled in Middle River in Baltimore County; brother Melvin perished as a young man in a bomb raid during World War II.

Stanley married Angela Roscoe, also from east Baltimore, in 1942. They had six children: Nancy, Ronald, Andrea, Frederick, David and Margaret.

Fred, David and Margie still live in Elkridge with their respective families. Nancy lives in Ocean City; Ronald in Western Maryland; and Andrea, a long-time resident of Columbia, recently relocated to Deal Island.

The Marcs were active members of St. Augustine Church and their children attended the school. Angela died in August of 1999, leaving Pop to love their 11 grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren in her absence. Marc still lives in the house they built together just after World War II.

She remembers her father was an active member of the Holy Name Society.

"Back in the day, Daddy ran the Big Six money wheel (which he actually made) at all the school bazaars and Mom worked in the kitchen with all the other Polish women that were part of the Ladies Sodality.

"Daddy worked for Glenn L. Martin (Martin Marietta) for 35 years. He and my mother gave us every opportunity to grow into self-assured adults with the right education to prosper in our chosen fields."

One of the highlights of the birthday celebration was when Marc was presented with an official Orioles jersey with "MARC" and the number "100" emblazoned on the back. Happy birthday, Pop. Sto lat!

The sweet smell of success permeated Furnace Avenue in Elkridge on Sunday, Sept. 16, when the Elkridge Food Pantry and Garden raised over $5,000 to feed our less fortunate neighbors with its annual "Give Where You Live 5K."

One hundred percent of the money directly benefits the food pantry and the event drew over 250 people who registered to support the cause.

"We believe in helping our neighbors," said Lori Gerus, event organizer. "And it takes a lot of people."

The Elkridge Food Pantry operates entirely on the generosity of the local community; it is not supported in any way by the local (or larger) government.

In addition to the support of runners, walkers, and donors, Elkridge's own local band O.R.B., (Owen Gerus, Bo Oliver and Cooper Gerus), played amplified acoustic music as runners crossed the finish line. The food pantry accepts nonperishable donations on an ongoing basis at GreenValley Marketplace, in a large bin conveniently located just past the registers on your way out the door. To donate perishable items, or to volunteer, contact Gerus at elkridgefoodpantry@gmail.com.

An extra loud shout out to Madeline Ann Lucas, who celebrates her 14th birthday Sept. 29! Maddy is a freshman at Howard High School and the youngest daughter of Pam Poolson and Everett Lucas of Hanover. Happy Birthday, Maddy.

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