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Josefina PriceHelped orphansJosefina "Nena" Pena Vazquez Price,...


Josefina Price

Helped orphans

Josefina "Nena" Pena Vazquez Price, who helped orphaned children get an education in her native Manila, Philippines, and was hostess to U.S. presidents, died Sunday of an aortic aneurysm at Johns Hopkins Hospital. She was 71.

She met her husband, Thomas Howard Price Jr., a native of Stockton Farm in Phoenix, Baltimore County, during World War II when he served aboard the first Navy vessel to enter Manila Bay during that conflict. The couple married in 1945.

Mr. Price was a Veterans Administration official whose assignments alternated between Washington, D.C., and Manila. He was director of the VA's Baltimore office from 1974 to 1976. He retired in 1988 in the Philippines.

During her husband's stints in the Philippines, Mrs. Price was official hostess when Presidents Lyndon B. Johnson and Richard M. Nixon, Vice President Spiro T. Agnew and other government and diplomatic officials visited the islands.

The former Josefina Pena Vazquez was born and reared in Manila and was a 1938 graduate of the French Convent School in Hong Kong. She earned her bachelor's degree from the University of Santo Thomas in the Philippines in 1942.

"Her great passion was providing funds for Philippine orphans to attend high school and college, and orchids," said her son, Thomas H. Price III of Fulton, Howard County. "She grew over 100 varieties of orchids."

She was active in the Catholic Women's League and the Manila Polo Club and served on the auxiliary board of the Veterans Memorial Center in Manila. She also was an American Red Cross volunteer.

Services were set for 2 p.m. today at Clynmalira Methodist Church, Old York and Stockton roads in Phoenix. In addition to her husband and son, survivors include a daughter, Pamela Dix of Silver Spring; and four grandchildren. Martin K. Bradin, retired manager of the Taxpayer Service Section of the Sales and Use Tax Division in the Maryland comptroller's office, died Sunday of an apparent stroke at his home on Westfield Avenue in Baltimore. He was 63.

He retired in 1992 after working 35 years in the comptroller's office.

Born in Baltimore, he attended Loyola High School and graduated from City College. He later attended the University of Baltimore. During the Korean War, he served in the Army on Guam and in England.

He was a former president and a member of the board of Hasslinger's Athletic Association, and was the group's Man of the Year in 1986.

He also belonged to the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, St. John's Oldtimers of the Tenth Ward and the United Third District Democratic Club.

He was a member of the Knights of Columbus and an usher and member of the Health Ministry Committee at St. Dominic's Roman Catholic Church, Harford Road and Gibbons Avenue, where a Mass of Christian burial was to be offered at 9:30 a.m. today.

Mr. Bradin is survived by his wife of 43 years, the former Mildred E. Mathias; two sons, Timothy Bradin of Baltimore and Michael Bradin of Glen Burnie; a sister, Dolores M. Huber of Tempe, Ariz.; and two granddaughters.

Leonard P. Baker Jr.

Lawyer, accountant

Leonard Passano Baker Jr., a lawyer and accountant who with his wife escaped from a burning ship in a lifeboat in 1980, died Jan. 2 of pneumonia at Roland Park Place. He was 82.

He and his wife, Margaret, were passengers aboard the Prinsendam, an 8,655-ton, Holland American ocean liner that caught fire in the Gulf of Alaska and sank during a 1980 voyage to the Orient.

They were forced from their stateroom by an early morning engine-room fire that had spread to the dining saloon. They waited on deck with other passengers before being ordered to abandon ship.

"We were on the port side," Mr. Baker recalled in a 1980 Evening Sun interview. "We got into a large rowboat with no power. It was meant for 64 people but held about 80 to 90."

They spent 11 hours in freezing weather before they were picked up by rescue helicopters and taken to Anchorage, Alaska.

Mr. Baker was reared on Park Avenue, graduated from Polytechnic Institute and attended the U.S. Naval Academy for two years.

He earned an accounting degree before joining the Army during World War II. He initially served as an accountant with the Johns Hopkins Hospital unit in Fiji and New Zealand, and later participated in the D-Day invasion.

He continued his education at the University of Baltimore, where he earned his bachelor's degree in 1952 and a law degree in 1953. After graduation, he established Ellin & Baker, an accounting and law firm from which he retired in 1980.

He and his wife liked to travel, and in 1989, after visiting Alaska, they flew to the Arctic Circle where they panned for gold. They also had traveled throughout Europe and Asia.

He was a member of the Society of Colonial Wars, the Society of the Cincinnati and Mensa.

Memorial services were set for 11 a.m. today at St. David's Episcopal Church, 4700 Roland Ave.

He is survived by his wife of 49 years, the former Margaret Fraser; a son, Robert Fraser Baker of Chapel Hill, N.C.; and two grandchildren.

Memorial donations may be made to the Alzheimer's Association, Suite 1000, 919 N. Michigan Ave., Chicago, Ill. 60611.

John A. Busch

Stationery executive

John A. Busch, retired vice president of the Baltimore Stationery Co., died Friday of respiratory failure at the Anne Arundel Medical Center in Annapolis. He was 77.

Mr. Busch, who retired in 1989 after 48 years with the company, had moved from Baltimore to Chester in 1986.

The Baltimore native was a former member of the Kiwanis Club of Loch Raven, the Baltimore Office Products Association and the National Office Products Association.

He was a member of the Kent Island Yacht Club.

His first wife, the former Thelma Keller died in 1976.

A memorial service was set for 10:30 a.m. today at St. Christopher's Roman Catholic Church in Chester.

He is survived by his wife, the former Marjorie Horne; two daughters, Mary L. Nedelka of Bayard, Del., and Joyce E. Asplen of Chesapeake City; a stepdaughter, Carolyn McCollum of Street; three stepsons, Douglas Gravatt of McGaheysville, Va., Scott Gravatt of Brinklow, Montgomery County, and Glenn Gravatt of Harpers Ferry, W.Va.; a brother, Joseph Busch of Baltimore; 14 grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.

Memorial donations may be made to the American Lung Association of Maryland.

Kevin J. Martin

Shock Trauma nurse

Kevin J. Martin, a nurse at the Maryland Shock Trauma Center, died Saturday of cancer at University of Maryland Medical Center. He was 33.

He had worked since 1991 in the trauma resuscitation unit at Shock Trauma. He joined the University of Maryland Medical Center in 1989, working in the open heart critical-care recovery unit. Earlier, he had worked in the surgical intensive-care unit at St. Agnes Hospital.

"In the business he was in, he was able to make people laugh who needed cheering," said his brother, William C. Martin Jr. of Ellicott City. A Woodlawn native, Kevin Martin attended Our Lady of Perpetual Help School and was a 1978 graduate of Cardinal Gibbons High School. He earned his bachelor's degree in nursing from the University of Maryland in 1982 and a master's in hospital administration from the Johns Hopkins University in 1985.

A Mass of Christian burial was to be offered at 9 a.m. today at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Roman Catholic Church, 6950 Dogwood Road, Woodlawn.

In addition to his brother, survivors include his parents, William C. Martin Sr. and Rose R. Martin; and two nephews, William C. Martin III and Michael A. Martin, both of Ellicott City.

Theodore Florenz Sr.

Furniture salesman

Theodore C. Florenz Sr., a retired furniture manufacturers' representative, died Saturday of cancer at the Manor Care Ruxton Nursing and Rehabilitation Center. He was 74.

The Timonium resident retired about 10 years ago after many years as a sales representative for furniture and housewares companies.

Born in Baltimore, he attended the Gilman School before graduating from the Polytechnic Institute and attending the Johns Hopkins University. He was on the golf team at Poly and later won tournaments at the Country Club of Maryland and at public courses.

He was a merchant seaman during World War II.

A memorial service was set for 7 p.m. today at the Ruck Towson Funeral Home, 1050 York Road.

He is survived by his wife, the former Pamela Callahan; two sons

Theodore C. Florenz Jr. of Severna Park and William C. Florenz of Jacksonville, Fla; a daughter, Susan Mourges of Phoenix; a brother, Frederick W. Florenz of Baltimore; and five grandchildren.

Richard W. Erdman

NASA engineer

Richard W. Erdman, a retired engineer at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, died Saturday of heart failure at North Arundel Hospital. He was 63.

The Severna Park resident retired in 1990 after 30 years with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. He worked in 1991 and 1992 for the Engineering Economics Research Corp. in Greenbelt.

The Baltimore native studied electrical engineering at the Johns Hopkins University. He was a member of the Naval Reserve from 1947 until 1955. Services were to be held at 1 p.m. today at the Barranco and Sons Funeral Home, Ritchie Highway and Robinson Road, Severna Park.

Mr. Erdman is survived by his wife, the former Carroll George; a son, John Timothy Erdman of Altamonte Springs, Fla.; two daughters, Leslie Kim Wood of Raleigh, N.C., and Jennifer K. Leen of Port St. Lucie, Fla.; four sisters, Mary A. Wolford of Bel Air, Gertrude Zlockie of Virginia Beach, Va., and Margaretta C. Monteclaro and Ellen V. Dutkevich, both of Baltimore; two brothers, William C. Erdman and Albert J. Erdman, both of Baltimore; and five grandchildren.

Mildred A. Williams

School reading specialist

Mildred A. Williams, a retired reading specialist in the Baltimore County school system, died Friday at Good Samaritan Hospital after a heart attack. She was 81.

The Lochearn resident retired in 1973.

The former Mildred Andrews was born in Charlotte, N.C., and attended Johnson C. Smith University there. She also held two master's degrees from New York University.

She was an elder of Lochearn Presbyterian Church and was active in the Baltimore Presbytery, serving on the executive committee of the Presbyterian Women.

She was president of the Maryland Women's Committee of the United Negro College Fund and a former president of the Herbert M. Frisby Historical Society.

Services were set for 11:30 a.m. today at Lochearn Presbyterian Church, 3800 Patterson Ave.

Survivors include her husband, Mack S. Williams; and several nieces and nephews.

Roosevelt Cooper Sr.


Sinai Hospital cook

Roosevelt Cooper Sr., a retired cook at Sinai Hospital, died Sunday of heart and kidney disease at Liberty Medical Center. He was 87.

Mr. Cooper retired 22 years ago after working at Sinai for more than 20 years. Earlier, he had been a cook at John's Restaurant on South Charles Street and had also worked part time at the Mercantile Club.

A native of Columbia, S.C., he came to Baltimore in 1942.

Mr. Cooper was a tenor in the Gospel Choir and a volunteer at Douglas Memorial Community Church.

Services were set for noon today at Douglas Memorial Community Church, Lafayette and Madison avenues, Baltimore.

He is survived by his wife, the former Sudie Day; two daughters, Betty Jo Cashier and Alice Sue Cooper-Lee, both of Baltimore; four sons, Charles William and Roosevelt Cooper Jr., both of Pikesville, and Elvard and Manuel Cooper, both of Baltimore; a sister, Julia Alma Faust of Columbia, S.C.; 19 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.

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