Fund established to help children of couple who died in car accident

November 11, 1992|By Patrick Gilbert | Patrick Gilbert,Staff Writer

When Richard and Mary Fisher finally got a chance to take an extended vacation after 10 years of marriage, they decided to take their children, Richard and Ashley, to see the sights in Florida.

"The kids were real excited about seeing Disney World," recalled Joseph Perzynski, Mr. Fisher's uncle.

But the trip ended in tragedy early Thursday when Mr. and Mrs. Fisher were killed in a traffic accident just outside of Orlando while their children were staying with friends in the area.

Funeral services for the Edgemere couple were to be held today at 10:30 a.m. at St. Timothy's Evangelical Lutheran Church, 2120 Dundalk Ave.

"The kids are doing as well as could be expected," said Mr. Perzynski, as he and others in the community tried to cope with the sudden loss. The children are staying with Mrs. Fisher's sister in Anne Arundel County.

George Sisson, principal of the Chesapeake Terrace Elementary School, where Rickey, 10, and Ashley, 7, attend classes, said the Fishers were volunteers in school activities and were active in the PTA.

"Chesapeake Terrace is a close-knit neighborhood, and everyone knew or knew of the Fishers," he said. Chesapeake Village, where the Fishers lived, is a section of neatly kept single-family detached homes just below Edgemere in Baltimore County.

The school PTA this week set up a trust fund for the youngsters.

Richard Fisher, 38, and his wife, Mary, who would have turned 36 Sunday, grew up in the Dundalk-Edgemere area, friends and relatives said. They were married at St. Timothy's Church in February 1981.

Mrs. Fisher, a housewife and graduate of Dundalk High, taught Sunday School at St. Timothy's, directed the church's vacation Bible school and sang in the church choir.

"If there was anything that had to be done at the church, Mary would volunteer to do it," said Carol Knepshield, the church secretary.

Debbie Barr, a lifelong friend, said Mary Fisher had a real zest for life.

"She used to tell me 'Debbie, when you're standing on my grave you can say, there lies a woman who loved life,' and she really did," Mrs. Barr said. "No matter what was going on in her life, she always had this twinkle in her eye and a smile for everyone."

Mr. Fisher, a graduate of Patapsco High School, worked at the Curtis Bay Co. operating a crane that loaded coal onto ships.

Mr. Perzynski said Mr. Fisher had gone fishing for rockfish off the shore of Fort Howard the Thursday before he left for Florida.

"Fishing and crabbing was the hobby he enjoyed most," Mr. Perzynski said.

Mr. Perzynski said his nephew and Mrs. Fisher had not had an extended vacation since their marriage. They decided over the summer to visit Florida.

"They went to Universal Studios and to Sea World but they never made it to Disney World," said Mr. Perzynski.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, the 1992 Ford van Mr. Fisher was driving ran a stop sign south of Orlando about 1:30 a.m. Thursday and was struck broadside by a tractor-trailer. Mr. and Mrs. Fisher were pronounced dead at area hospitals. A passenger in the van, Brenda Smith, 36, was seriously injured.

In addition to the two children, Mrs. Fisher is survived by her father, Paul O. Eckort of Baltimore, and two sisters, R. Gwen Eichorn of Pasadena and Sharon J. Clemens of Baltimore. Mr. Fisher is survived by three sisters, Sherry Schreiber, Lois F. Cox and Karen J. Fisher, all of Dundalk.

Those interested in contributing to the children's trust fund should send checks to the Richard P. and Ashley N. Fisher Trust Fund, c/o The Chesapeake Terrace PTA, 2112 Lodge Farm Rd., Edgemere, Md. 21219.

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