Loretta M. Beadenkopf, former owner of a West Pratt Street candy store, died Sunday of complications from dementia at her Morrell Park home. She was 90.
Loretta M. Keys was born and raised in Southwest Baltimore, and after graduating from Fourteen Holy Martyrs School in 1933, went to work for her father, "Cap" Keys, who owned a penny candy store in the 300 block of S. Gilmor St.
It was while working at the candy store that she met Caroll E. "Ed" Beadenkopf, whom she married in 1940.
While her husband was away serving with the Army's 1st Infantry Division in Europe, she worked for the Fulton Laundry.
In 1960, Mrs. Beadenkopf established Beadenkopf's Confectionery Store at 1719 W. Pratt. St., and lived in a rowhouse next door with her husband and four children.
In addition to penny candy, Mrs. Beadenkopf sold food and other staples.
Known by her neighborhood customers as "Mrs. B.," she worked 12-hour days and was open seven days a week.
"First, it helped pay for both me and my brother Robert to go to college, but it was also an important part of the neighborhood," said a son, Edward G. Beadenkopf of Warrenton, Va.
"My mother offered credit to those who could not pay. She didn't care if you were white or black; if you needed help, she would take care of you," he said.
Mrs. Beadenkopf closed the store and retired in 1984.
She was a lifelong member of the Funsters Ladies Club and enjoyed spending time at her summer house in Bayside Beach in Anne Arundel County. She also liked accompanying her husband to Army reunions.
In a 1981 interview with her son, Robert, Mrs. Beadenkopf reflected on her life.
"Don't open a store. It's hours and hours of hard work. Don't open a store if you have an education. You can always do better," she said.
"Life goes too fast. Do what you really want to do. If you want to go the woods, then go. If you want to go to the mountains, then go," she said. "But do it together; always with the one you love."
Mr. Beadenkopf, who had been maintenance supervisor at the Baltimore City Courthouse Annex during the 1960s and owner of Ed's Bar, also in the 1700 block of W. Pratt St., died in 2004.
Mrs. Beadenkopf who had moved to Morrell Park in 1999, was a communicant of St. Benedict Roman Catholic Church, where a Mass of Christian burial was offered Thursday.
Also surviving are another son, Robert J. Beadenkopf of Pasadena; two daughters, Carol A. Helms of Baltimore and Joan M. Fogle of Morrell Park; a brother, George Keys of Arbutus; a sister, Mary Beadenkopf of Catonsville; six grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.