Vera Dolina, sales associate, dies

Vera Dolina, a retired sales associate who enjoyed the theater, opera and ballet, died March 15 of complications from Alzheimer's disease at Glade Valley Center in Walkersville.

The former longtime resident of Belcamp and the Long Bar Harbor neighborhood in Abingdon was 93.

The daughter of Josef Formankova, and Frantiska Formankova, who were farmers, Vera Formankova was born and raised in Komna, in the former Czechoslovakia.

After graduating from high school, her dreams of attending a conservatory were interrupted by the outbreak of World War II.

Her father, who was mayor of the village, was responsible for protecting residents during the Nazi occupation.

"The difficult war years left a lasting impression," said a daughter, Anna Dolina of Lutherville.

She was married in 1947 to Thomas Dolina, and the couple moved to Belcamp, where her husband worked for Bata Shoe, a Czech firm that had a plant in the Harford County community.

Mrs. Dolina, who later became an American citizen, volunteered at Aberdeen Elementary School and was a member of the Harford Memorial Hospital's Ladies' Auxiliary.

A talented seamstress, cook and baker, Mrs. Dolina sewed for the auxiliary's various hospital projects and baked Czech pastries for Belcamp's booth at the auxiliary's annual fundraisers.

She was an active member of the Belcamp chapter of Sokol, a cultural and fitness organization.

At her home, she maintained a vegetable and fruit garden and preserved her annual harvest, her family said, and each year she would butcher half a pig and half a cow in the basement of her home.

"There was a community smokehouse in Belcamp, and she would smoke her sausage and hams," her daughter said.

Mrs. Dolina enjoyed attending the theater, opera, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra concerts and the ballet. She was a subscriber to the Susquehanna Players, BSO concerts in Harford County, and opera and ballet productions at Harford Community College.

She also liked to attend productions at the Lyric and Morris Mechanic theaters and enjoyed visiting museums in Baltimore and Washington.

In the early 1960s, she worked as a sales associate at Maureen's, an Aberdeen knitting shop. After it closed, she was associated with Jo-Ann fabrics in Aberdeen and Edgewood. She retired in 1986.

Mrs. Dolina and her husband enjoyed singing and dancing. She was also an avid reader and traveler, returning to her homeland for visits in 1959 and 1967.

Her husband of 53 years, who was in charge of maintenance and the grounds at the Beta Shoe Co., died in 2000.

Mrs. Dolina donated her body to the Maryland Anatomy Board.

No funeral services are planned.

In addition to her daughter, she is survived by a son, Thomas Dolina of Baltimore; another daughter, Jarmila Harper of Walkersville; and five grandchildren.

—Frederick N. Rasmussen

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