Mary M. McCarthyRiparius Corp. ownerMary Mackey McCarthy,...


Mary M. McCarthy

Riparius Corp. owner

Mary Mackey McCarthy, part-owner and stockholder in her husband's liquor distributorship and later in his real estate company, died Thursday of congestive heart failure at her home in Ruxton. She was 92.

Mrs. McCarthy was a stockholder and part-owner of McCarthy-Hicks Inc., a company established by her husband, F. Jordon McCarthy, in 1933. A regional wholesale distributor of fine spirits, wines and beer, the business was sold to a competitor, Reliable Liquors Inc., in 1985.

After the sale, Mr. McCarthy reinvested in real estate, opening the Riparius Corp. Of its many construction and design projects, one of the largest was the Riparius Center, a business park in Owings Mills. Until her death, Mrs. McCarthy was an owner, principal stockholder, officer and director in that company, which the family still owns and operates.

Mrs. McCarthy was a 1920 graduate of Mount Vernon High School and a 1924 Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Smith College, where she studied Romance languages. Mrs. McCarthy taught French and Spanish at a high school in Northampton, Mass., from 1924 to 1926.

While a student at Smith College, she met her future husband, who was pursuing an undergraduate degree at Dartmouth College. They were married in 1926.

The couple moved to New York, where Mr. McCarthy took his first job as a salesman with National Outdoor Advertising. They lived there for four years until he was transferred to Baltimore.

They lived in Walbrook in the late 1920s and moved to Homeland in 1938. In 1947, they moved to Ruxton, where they lived for 46 years. Mr. McCarthy died in 1976.

An active volunteer for the Red Cross, Mrs. McCarthy worked as a nurses' aide at area hospitals, primarily Union Memorial, during World War II. She also was a volunteer at Smith College, where she chaired their book sale.

Mrs. McCarthy was an avid reader who loved mysteries. She also was a bridge player and golfer.

Private services were held yesterday at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Ruxton.

She is survived by a son, William J. McCarthy of Ruxton; three grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

The family suggested that memorial donations could be made to the Church of the Good Shepherd, 1401 Carrollton Ave., Ruxton, Md. 21204.

Charles Coombs III

Decorated soldier

Charles W. Coombs III, a Baltimore-born, retired soldier who was wounded in the Korean and Vietnam wars, died Thursday at his home in Elgin, S.C., of complications from emphysema and a heart ailment. He was 58.

Mr. Coombs retired from the Army in 1973 as a chief warrant officer after 21 years of service. From then until the early 1980s, he taught industrial arts to high school students in the Columbia, S.C.

"He was always so proud of the 'Big Red One.' He always had that 'Big Red One' patch on him," signifying his membership in the 1st Infantry Division, said his widow, E. Lois Johnson Coombs.

Mr. Coombs retired after a brush with death during his second tour of duty in Vietnam, Mrs. Coombs said. In one battle, he was injured and all but one other soldier in his squad were killed, she said.

He received numerous medals and commendations that included two Purple Hearts and the Bronze Star for valor.

Mr. Coombs was also an artist who enjoyed welding brass and copper into abstract sculpture. His work included star bursts, representations of butterflies and fish and "beautiful water fountains," his wife said. He also taught art to developmentally disabled children.

He was a member of St. John Neumann Catholic Church in Columbia, S.C.

Mr. Coombs was reared in the Brooklyn section of South Baltimore and attended St. Rose of Lima School until he joined the Army during the Korean War. He moved to the Columbia, S.C., area when stationed nearby after the war.

Services for Mr. Coombs will be held at 3 p.m. today at the Shives Funeral Home, 5202 Colonial Drive, Columbia, S.C.

Besides his widow, he is survived by a son, Charles W. Coombs IV of Lugoff, S.C.; three daughters, Terry Harris of Columbia, S.C., Cynthia Brewer of Blythewood, S.C., and Annette Almond of Lugoff, S.C.; his mother, Mrs. Catherine Weber of Brooklyn; two brothers, Leroy Coombs of Baltimore and Steven Coombs in Florida; and four grandchildren.

Sarah Fitzsimmons

Homemaker, volunteer

Sarah C. Fitzsimmons, a resident of Stoneleigh for 30 years who volunteered for Meals on Wheels, died Thursday at Union Memorial Hospital of complications from a stroke. She was 85.

A homemaker who spent her time helping others, Mrs. Fitzsimmons volunteered for Meals on Wheels from about 1970 to 1980, and over the years cared for several family members who were hospitalized or sick.

She did find time for herself, taking history courses at her alma mater, the College of Notre Dame, and at Roland Park Place, where she had lived for the past seven years.

Her favorite subjects were British history, particularly the English monarchy; American history and classics. An aficionado of classical music, she had a passion for the music of Mozart and was known to friends and family as an expert on his life and work.

She and her husband, Robert E. Fitzsimmons, a Chesapeake Bay pilot, traveled often, visiting Europe, Mexico, Scandinavia, Canada and South America. They also vacationed in Ireland, where both had relatives. Mr. Fitzsimmons died in 1974.

Married in 1941, the couple lived in the Wyman Park Apartments before moving to Stoneleigh in the mid-1940s, where they spent the next 30 years.

A member of the Woman's Club of Roland Park, MrsFitzsimmons was an avid bridge player.

The former Sarah Coulehan was born in Cumberland anattended St. Patrick's Elementary School and Mount St. Agnes High School as well as the College of Notre Dame.

A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 10 a.m. tomorrow at St. Pius X Church, 6428 York Road.

She is survived by a sister, Mary Alice Parks of Baltimore; and a niece, Ellen P. Young of Baltimore.

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