Merle Stephens Retired restaurateur

September 18, 1992

Merle Stephens, retired owner of a restaurant started by her parents at their Canton home, died Monday of complications of diabetes at the home of a granddaughter in Ellicott City.

A memorial service for the 82-year-old Toone Street resident will be at 11 a.m. tomorrow at Holy Evangelists Episcopal Church, 1001 S. Potomac St.

Born in Baltimore, the former Merle Lidard was a 1928 graduate of Eastern High School who did secretarial work after her graduation from what is now Towson State University. Her mother and an aunt converted the grocery store her father had started on the first floor of their home into a restaurant with 11 tables and a counter after his death in 1915.

She took over the business, known as Lidard's, in 1945 after the death of her mother. Though it originally was open for three meals a day, its operation was cut to breakfast and lunch as industries in the area closed and was closed itself when she retired in 1980.

Her husband of 57 years, William P. "Steve" Stephens, died a little more than a year ago.

She is survived by two daughters, Nancy Anne Stephens of Baltimore and Kathleen Elizabeth Razmus of Ellicott City, and three grandchildren.

The family suggested that memorial contributions could be made to the Holy Evangelists Church or to the hospice of the Visiting Nurse Association of Baltimore.

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