M. E. Kansler dies; played piano for silent movies
A Mass of Christian burial for Mary Ellen Kansler, a 100-year-old native Baltimorean who played the piano for silent movies, will be offered at 10 a.m. today at St. Thomas More Roman Catholic Church, 6806 McClean Blvd.
Mrs. Kansler, who lived on Rosalie Avenue, died Sunday at St. Joseph Hospital of complications of diabetes.
She was an Orioles fan, who ignored a congratulatory message from the president at her 100th birthday party last Jan. 1 in favor of an autographed picture of former Orioles pitcher Jim Palmer, the best player Mrs. Kansler said she had seen since Babe Ruth.
The former Mary Ellen Stroebel studied piano and elocution at the Institute of Notre Dame.
In 1910, she began playing in theaters, accompanying the action on the screen, a job she kept for about three years until her marriage to Matthew Cavanaugh who died in 1917. In 1922, she married Robert C. Kansler, who died in 1981 after retiring from what is now the Baltimore Specialty Steels Corp.
She was fond of telling stories, of shopping at Howard and Lexington streets, or of attending openings of new shows at the Gayety Theater to see stars including Bob Hope and the Marx Brothers when burlesque houses specialized in comedy.
She is survived by three sons, Matthew C. Cavanaugh, and Robert C. and Richard C. Kansler, all of Perry Hall; a daughter, Norma Willhide, of Parkville; 22 grandchildren; and 28 great-grandchildren.
Samuel H. Edwards
Former die setter
Services for Samuel H. Edwards, who was retired from the National Can Co. in Baltimore, will be held at 7 p.m. today at the Grissom Funeral Home in Kissimmee, Fla.
Mr. Edwards, who was 67 and moved to Kissimmee from Parkville in 1983, died Saturday of heart disease at his home.
He retired as a die setter for the can company in 1979 and had worked earlier at the Glenn L. Martin Co. (now Martin Marietta Corp.), the Western Electric Co. and other manufacturing firms.
A native of Greensboro who came to Baltimore as a youth, he was awarded the Purple Heart after being wounded as a Marine during the World War II invasion of Iwo Jima.
Mr. Edwards is survived by his wife, the former Jonnie Eward; two sons, Thomas H. and Samuel H. Edwards Jr., both of Baltimore; three daughters, Janice, Carol and Patricia Edwards, all of Baltimore ; a sister, Ellen Thawley of Baltimore; and three grandchildren.
Gwynn T. Brown
Services for Gwynn Tibbals Brown, an advertising design and layout artist, will be held at 11 a.m. today at Henry W. Jenkins and Sons, 4905 York Road.
Mrs. Brown, who was 60 and lived in the Broadview Apartments, died Tuesday of cancer at the Harbor Hospital Center.
Until nearly two years ago she worked for the Baltimore Opera Company and also for the Maryland Historical Society and other clients.
The former Gwynn Tibbals was a native of Baltimore and a graduate of the Roland Park Country School and Ogontz Junior College in Pennsylvania.
Her husband, John B. Brown III, died in 1979, but she is survived by her mother, Doris S. Tibbals of Baltimore.
The family suggested that memorial contributions could be made to the Joseph Richey Hospice.
Albert L. Burker Jr.
Services for Albert L. Burker Jr., who owned his own insurance agency and was instrumental in establishing the Exchange Clubs Child Abuse Prevention Center of Maryland, will be held at 1 p.m. tomorrow at Loring Byers Funeral Directors, 8728 Liberty Road.
Mr. Burker, who was 70 and lived on North Rolling Road in Catonsville, died Sunday at a hospital in Reno, Nev., after collapsing at Lake Tahoe while on a vacation trip.
A general agent for the Union Central Life Insurance Co. and a certified Life Underwriter, he had been in the insurance business for 45 years and owned the Burker Insurance Agency, first in Towson and later in Catonsville.
Mr. Burker was born in Baltimore and graduated from Forest Park High School.
The first president of the Exchange Club of Towson and a former president of the Mason-Dixon District Exchange Clubs, he successfully campaigned for the establishment of the child-abuse prevention center as part of a national Exchange Club program.
He is survived by his wife, the former Ann Wardell; two daughters, Barbara B. Keys of Catonsville and Suzanne M. MacLean of Towson; a son, Army Maj. Albert Lee Burker III of Frederick; two sisters, I. Western Horton of Westminster and Lucille M. W. Siegel of Pikesville; a brother, Robert C. S. Burker of Towson; and three grandchildren.
The family suggested that memorial contributions could be made to the child-abuse prevention center.
John W. Hunter Sr.
Former history teacher
Services for John W. Hunter Sr., a retired history teacher at the Polytechnic Institute, will be held at 10:30 a.m. tomorrow at the Mitchell-Wiedefeld Home, 6500 York Road.
Mr. Hunter, who was 66 and lived in Glen Arm, died Tuesday of cancer at Stella Maris Hospice.