Stanley F. Dabkowski, the retired owner of a printers ink supply business, died of heart failure Wednesday at his Parkville home. He was 83.
Known as "Dabby" or "the Ink Man," Mr. Dabkowski was born and raised in East Baltimore before moving to Baltimore County as an adult. His son Paul Dabkowski of Lutherville said Mr. Dabkowski left Patterson High School in 11th grade to help support his mother and family.
Mr. Dabkowski served in the Army during World War II and was stationed on the Panamanian island of Taboga. He was a radio mechanic for an air warning squadron responsible for protecting the Panama Canal, his son said. When he returned, he became a member of the Parkville American Legion post and the Veterans of Foreign Wars local in Rosedale.
He married Regina T. "Pat" Tomaszewska in 1949 and they had five children together. Mr. Dabkowski worked his way up from pressman to become the owner of Commercial Ink Industries of Maryland in Columbia, his son said. He was a past president of the Baltimore Litho Club and a member of several other related clubs.
For years, his son said, Mr. Dabkowski's license plate read "INK MAN"
He served for years as a youth football and baseball coach. Mr. Dabkowski also held season tickets over the years to the Baltimore Colts and the Orioles, his son said.
After retiring in the late 1980s, he spent much of his time helping another son, Stanley, at his Spring Meadow Farms in Upperco in Baltimore County. Mr. Dabkowski regularly sold tickets at the nursery's annual pumpkin festival and shucked corn for a booth at the Maryland State Fair.
A lover of surf fishing, especially near his vacation house in Titusville, Fla., Mr. Dabkowski was also known for his dedication to his church choir and his skill at making crab cakes and potato pancakes.
A funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. tomorrow at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church, 8501 Loch Raven Blvd.
In addition to his wife and two sons, survivors include a daughter, Janine Dabkowski of Daytona Beach, Fla.; a brother, Leon Dabkowski of the Denver area; a sister, Jean Subock of St. Augustine, Fla.; seven grandchildren; and one great-grandson. Mr. Dabkowski was predeceased by a son, Gregory Dabkowski, and a daughter, Regina Evans.