Wendy Jill Spector, a former assistant activities director at a retirement community and an accomplished horsewoman, died Sept. 20 of cancer at her Glen Arm farm. She was 54.
Wendy Jill Hershfield, the daughter of an electrical engineer and a Baltimore County public schools guidance counselor, was born in Baltimore and raised in Glen Arm.
After graduating from Perry Hall High School in 1973, she earned a bachelor's degree in 1977 from Goucher College.
She taught French at the Garrison Forest School from 1977 to 1979, and for the next two years held teaching assignments in Cincinnati public schools and was an admissions counselor at Salem College in West Virginia.
In 1981, she married Dr. Leonard Spector, and the couple moved to Washington, where she worked as a French translator for three years in the East African information section of the World Bank.
After moving to her 24-acre farm in Glen Arm, Mrs. Spector worked for 20 years teaching French and English at several area preschools.
In recent years, she had been the assistant activities director at the Blakehurst retirement community in Towson.
Mrs. Spector began riding horses in her youth and taught riding at Tranquility Manor Farm in Monkton.
She was an avid fox hunter and a member of the Elkridge-Harford Hunt Club, and
enjoyed taking horseback riding vacations.
Mrs. Spector was a longtime volunteer with Pets on Wheels.
Despite being diagnosed six years ago with the cancer that claimed her life, Mrs. Spector continued to lead a full life. "She was an inspiration to me. She fought cancer for six years and had accepted her fate," Dr. Spector said.
"Despite fatigue from chemotherapy, she continued to help other people, to go to the health club to exercise, and to participate in horseback riding events, still performing well enough to earn ribbons," he wrote in a eulogy for his wife.
Mrs. Spector was an avid Scrabble player, reader and Siamese cat fancier.
Services were Sept. 22.
In addition to her husband of 29 years, Mrs. Spector is survived by two daughters, Dr. Bethany M. Mulla of Norfolk, Va., and Amanda E. Spector of Ithaca, N.Y.; her mother, Claire Hershfield of Towson; and a brother, Dr. Barton Hershfield of Martins Ferry, Ohio.