Lucille Patterson Wade, 79, city schools librarian


Lucille Patterson Wade, a retired Baltimore City school system librarian who was active in the civic affairs of Turners Station, died Wednesday of a pulmonary embolism at Franklin Square Hospital Center. She was 79 and lived in Dundalk.

Mrs. Wade had been a librarian at Frederick Douglass, Mergenthaler Vocational-Technical and Patterson high schools and retired in the 1980s.

During the 1950s, she was on the faculty of then-Morgan State College.

Mrs. Wade and her husband, Dr. William C. Wade Sr., a physician in Turners Station, helped needy students in the eastern Baltimore County community obtain scholarships to attend preparatory schools and colleges.

One student the couple helped is Calvin Hill, who grew up in Turners Station and was a student at Sollers Point Junior-Senior High School. The Wades helped him obtain a scholarship from the Schenley Wholesalers Foundation Board to attend Riverdale (N.Y.) Country School.

A National Merit Scholar and Yale University graduate, Mr. Hill was a star running back in the National Football League for 13 years. He also served on the Orioles' board of directors and was inducted into the Maryland Athletic Hall of Fame in 1986.

Kweisi Mfume, president and chief executive officer of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, who grew up in Turners Station, remembered Mrs. Wade yesterday as "being the woman beside the man."

"Dr. Wade was one of only two doctors in Turners Station [and] was more worried about the health of the people than making money on his patients," Mr. Mfume said. "His strength came from having a wife who was a great part of what he did.

"Mrs. Wade became a queen mother in Turners Station because people valued her commitment to the community. She never left. She stayed there after her husband's death. She continued in her husband's absence through her presence to speak to the better aspects of the people in the community," Mr. Mfume said. "She will be greatly missed."

Born Lucille Patterson, she was raised in Washington, where she graduated from Dunbar High School.

She earned her bachelor's degree from Howard University and a master's degree in health and physical education from the University of Michigan. She also studied library science at then-Towson State College.

In 1944, she married Dr. Wade, who died in 1987.

For the past 19 years, Mrs. Wade was a volunteer at the National Aquarium in Baltimore. She also served as a judge for the McDonald's Scholarship Fund in Baltimore.

An avid traveler, she had visited Africa, Europe, the Far East and the Caribbean.

She was a lifetime member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and the Tally Up Bridge Club.

A memorial service for Mrs. Wade will be held at 2 p.m. Friday at New Shiloh Baptist Church, 105 East Ave., Turners Station.

She is survived by a son, Dr. William C. Wade Jr. of Hampton, Va.; a daughter, Linda Wade Hurd of Denver; a sister, Melva Patterson Scott of Washington; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

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