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Ray William Tobias, 82, founder of truck company


Ray William Tobias, retired founder of a truck and trailer business and combat veteran of World War II, died Saturday of complications from Alzheimer's disease at the Veterans Affairs Rehabilitation and Extended Care Center in Northwood. The longtime Essex resident was 82.

Born in Fredericksburg, Pa., he moved to Essex in 1940 and was a machinist and later foreman at the old Glenn L. Martin Co. aircraft plant in Middle River.

During World War II, he served in the Army and was seriously wounded near St. Die, France. He was awarded the Purple Heart.

In 1968, he founded Eastern Truck & Trailer Corp. in Rosedale. The business is now operated by his son, Michael B. Tobias of Upper Falls.

Mr. Tobias was a member of Big Brothers of Baltimore and often held retreats for the organization at his Harford County farm outside Norrisville, where he lived until moving in 1996 to County Meadows retirement community in Leader Heights, Pa.

His wife of 20 years, the former Anna Mae Hartman, a former editor of the East Baltimore Guide, died in 1966.

Services will be held at noon Thursday at Evans Funeral Chapel, 3 Newport Drive, Forest Hill.

Survivors, in addition to his son, include two other sons, Ray W. Tobias Jr. of New Freedom, Pa., and Stephen D. Tobias of Dundalk; two brothers, Arthur Tobias of York, Pa., and Wayne Tobias of Raleigh, N.C.; three sisters, Geraldine Sparks of Harrisburg, Pa., Margaret Fessler of Lebanon, Pa., and Janet Anspach of Morgantown, Pa.; eight grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

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