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Cameron Cromwell

The Baltimore Sun

Cameron Stirling Cromwell, whose ponds and fences dot the Baltimore region, died of a heart attack Tuesday outside his home in Sparks. He was 72.

Self-employed for most of his career, he specialized in post-and-rail fencing and in pond construction, mostly in Baltimore County. His family estimated that he built more than 100 ponds over more than four decades.

Though semiretired for the past few years, he continued to build and repair ponds.

Born in Baltimore and raised on a farm in Hereford, he graduated in 1956 from Hereford High School.

For about 10 years, he worked building fences, clearing land and building ponds while serving in the Army National Guard Reserves. An expert marksman with the rank of sergeant, he taught firearms use and safety.

For several years after that, he worked for Fritz Fence Co. and Mitchell Industries in Glen Burnie, acting as a troubleshooter and liaison between his employer and its clients and the government. He left to form Stirling Construction, a home-based company that built fences and ponds. From 1994 to 1999, he added his son-in-law Michael Fiorenza as a partner before going into semiretirement.

He was married to the former Diane Dilweg for 37 years.

A longtime member of Immanuel Episcopal Church in Sparks, he served as an acolyte and chalicist. He was on the church's repair committee for the past 25 years.

He loved to travel, domestically as well as overseas. Trips took him to the New York, Canada and to England, where he visited his son, as well as to Scotland and France. He enjoyed sharing stories with people from around the world.

"You'd go to a pub. He would sit there and talk for four or five hours. He was a great storyteller," said his wife.

He also enjoyed working with his hands, tinkering with cars and building chairs at home.

A funeral service will be held at 1 p.m. Friday at Immanuel Episcopal Church, 1509 Glencoe Road, Sparks.

In addition to his wife, survivors include a son, Cameron S. Cromwell of Surrey, England; a daughter, Jennifer Fiorenza of Glyndon; and five grandchildren.

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