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Rodney J. Brooks, 81, insurance executiveRodney J....


Rodney J. Brooks, 81, insurance executive

Rodney J. Brooks, a retired insurance executive and philanthropic leader, died Wednesday of heart failure at Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care. He was 81 and lived in the Lake Roland section of North Baltimore.

In 1954, he became managing partner of the Tongue, Brooks & Co. insurance agency in downtown Baltimore. He was named president in 1974 and retired in 1985.

He was lay chairman of the Catholic Charities Appeal from 1959 to 1961. Pope Paul VI named him a Knight of St. Gregory.

Born in Baltimore and reared in Homeland, Mr. Brooks was a graduate of Boys' Latin School and attended Georgetown University.

He was a member of the Greater Baltimore Committee and had served on the boards of Eutaw Savings Bank; Finance Co. of America; Lyric Foundation; Ruxton-Riderwood Association; Maryland Institute, College of Art; Franklin Square Hospital Center; Mercy Medical Center; St. Vincent dePaul Society; Hibernian Society; and National Jewish Hospital of Denver.

During World War II he joined the Army. He landed at Omaha Beach during the invasion of Normandy and fought in the Battle of the Bulge. He was discharged with the rank of sergeant.

He was a gardener, stamp collector, and tennis and squash player.

In 1945, he married the former Margaret Eloise Wells, who survives him.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday at Shrine of the Sacred Heart on Smith Avenue.

He is also survived by a son, Rodney J. Brooks III of Baltimore; three daughters, Margaret Pilachowski of Baltimore, Lyn Brooks of Phoenix and Laura Brooks of Columbia; five brothers, Rodgers Brooks of Brooklandville, Jack Brooks of Cambridge, Frank Brooks of Roland Park, Harvey Brooks of Cape May, N.J., and Gill Brooks of Ruxton; a sister, Mary Rodney Peterson of Ocean City, N.J.; and five grandchildren.

Cora Lynne Tolley, 74, homemaker, orchid grower

Cora Lynne Tolley, a homemaker and longtime resident of the Sherwood Forest community near Annapolis, died Monday of complications from a stroke at Hope Hospice in Fort Myers, Fla. She was 74.

Mrs. Tolley maintained an interest in historic preservation in Annapolis and Sanibel Island, Fla., where she had spent winters for 10 years, and was a docent at the Sanibel Historical Museum.

She enjoyed golfing, other sports, travel and fine art. She also liked bird-watching and was an accomplished orchid grower. She was an active member of the Sanibel-Captiva Orchid Society.

The former Cora Lynne Rossman was born and reared on St. Paul Street. She was a 1946 graduate of Bryn Mawr School and received a bachelor's degree in education from the University of Maryland in 1950. She was a member of the University of Maryland Terrapin Club.

In 1950, she married Richard T. Tolley Sr., who died in 1994.

Mrs. Tolley was a lifelong member of Lovely Lane United Methodist Church in Baltimore, where funeral services were held yesterday.

She is survived by two sons, Richard Treherne Tolley Jr. of Reidsville, N.C., and Robert Evans Tolley of Annapolis; a sister, Bettie Evans Seckinger of Coral Gables, Fla.; and two grandchildren.

Elbert S. Hawkins Sr., 76, electrical engineer

Elbert S. Hawkins Sr., a retired electrical engineer, died May 12 of emphysema at Asbury-Solomons Retirement Community in Solomons. He was 76.

A resident of the Calvert County retirement community since 1996, Mr. Hawkins previously lived in Arnold and Pasadena.

Mr. Hawkins was principal engineer with Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. from 1947 until 1966, when he left the company to establish his own engineering firm.

He later owned a pet store in Glen Burnie. He retired in 1989.

Born and reared in Catonsville, he was a 1941 graduate of Catonsville High School. He served in the Army Air Forces during World War II.

He earned his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University of Maryland, College Park in 1947.

He was an avid boater.

Services were held yesterday.

Mr. Hawkins is survived by his wife of 50 years, the former Elizabeth Eleanor Howard; a son, E. Stewart Hawkins Jr. of Hollywood, St. Mary's County; a daughter, Eleanor C. Hawkins of Raleigh, N.C.; and many nephews and nieces.

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