Rowland Edwin King, a retired Baltimore Gas and Electric engineer and a co-owner of Sliders tavern, died of cancer Thursday at his Towson home. He was 85.
Born in Baltimore and raised on Hamilton Avenue, he was the son of Robert R. King, a Gomprecht and Benesch furniture buyer and his wife, Viola A. Weinberger, an executive assistant at the old Brager-Gutman department store.
He attended St. Dominic School and was a 1952 graduate of Mount Saint Joseph High School, where he earned letters in football and played baseball and basketball for four years. He was named to the Maryland Scholastic Association’s all-star baseball team in 1952.
According to a family biography, he attended Johns Hopkins University, and after his junior year signed a professional baseball contract with the Orioles. He played in the minor leagues (in classes A, B, and D) as a third baseman and was converted to pitcher after the arrival of a new third base prospect, Hall of Famer Brooks Robinson.
Family members said Mr. King remained a dedicated Orioles fan.
He returned to Johns Hopkins and received bachelor of science degrees in civil and mechanical engineering.
Mr. King was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity.
A registered professional engineer, he joined the Baltimore Gas and Electric Co. He went on to work at the National Brewing Company from 1965 to 1973, and returned to BGE in 1980. He retired as manager of customer operations in 1997.
He was an owner at Sliders Bar and Grille near Oriole Park at Camden Yards from 1997 to 2002. He was one of its three managers.
Mr. King was a board member of the Transportation Association Partnership of Baltimore County and board chair of the Babe Ruth Birthplace.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held 10 a.m. Saturday at Immaculate Conception Church, 200 Ware Ave. in Towson, where he was a member.
Survivors include his wife of 62 years, Eleanor Marie Cronin, a medical secretary and homemaker; three sons, Kelly P. King of Cincinnati, James R. King of Cockeysville and John F. King of Glen Arm; two daughters, Mary Jeanne Frank of Timonium and Mary Kathryn Bell of Minneapolis; a sister, Marie Rollman of Wisconsin; 12 grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.