Edward Gillern Jr. Tavern owner


A Mass of Christian burial for Edward Michael Gillern Jr., the longtime owner of the Jolly Post Tavern in Sparrows Point, will be at 9 a.m. today at St. Rita's Roman Catholic Church, 2903 Dunleer Road in Dundalk.

Mr. Gillern, known as "Rip," died Friday at the Fort Howard Veterans Medical Center after a brief illness. He was 82.

Born in Scranton, Pa., Mr. Gillern moved to Baltimore in 1938 and soon began working at the Jolly Post, a popular hangout for steelworkers and others after World War II. He married the owner's daughter, the former Mary Jane Burkehouse, and bought the bar in 1949.

He owned the tavern, which was known for its crab cakes, annual St. Patrick's Day parties, and Mr. Gillern's sense of humor, until 1974.

A veteran of the Army's 29th Infantry Division, he took part in the Allied D-Day invasion and received a Purple Heart after being wounded in battle.

After returning home to eastern Baltimore County, where he had a home for many years at Todd's Inheritance farm at Fort Howard, he became active in Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 6694.

A man who loved books, Mr. Gillern read best-sellers, obscure novels and history books in addition to the New York Times and area newspapers.

He is survived by his wife, who lives in Dundalk; a son, E. Michael Gillern III of Fort Myers, Fla.; five daughters, Stacey Cumberland of Kingsville, Susan Pompa and Julie Gillern of Baltimore, Mary Bilik of Hoboken, N.J., and Jane Gillern of Washington; a brother, Frank A. Gillern of East Orange, N.J.; a sister, Louise Collins of Westfield, N.J.; and five grandchildren.

Memorial contributions can be made to the Fort Howard Veterans Administration Medical Center.

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