Helen Mary GailArchitect, 103Helen Mary Gail, a native of...


November 20, 1992

Helen Mary Gail

Architect, 103

Helen Mary Gail, a native of Baltimore who was an architect, died Saturday at Broadmead of heart failure at the age of 103.

A memorial service for Miss Gail, who moved to Broadmead from Stamford, Conn., in 1981, was to be conducted at 2 p.m. today at the retirement community at 13801 York Road in Cockeysville.

A 1908 graduate of the Bryn Mawr School, she graduated from Goucher College and in 1921 received the sixth degree in architecture granted to a woman by Columbia University.

Though her practice died at the approach of the Depression, she designed a home for herself in Katonah, N.Y., and later one for another friend.

At the time of her 100th birthday, she spoke of her early days in Baltimore, first on Greenspring Avenue, later downtown and finally in one of the early homes in Guilford.

Her father managed Gail and Ax, a family tobacco business that made pipe and chewing tobacco including Little Joker, a fine cut chew. The company was sold to the American Tobacco Co., but her father remained as manager.

He also was fire commissioner at the time of the Baltimore Fire. Miss Gail could see the flames from her Greenspring Avenue home and was allowed to examine the ruins while they were still smoldering.

Interested in both astrology and astronomy, she twice watched Halley's comet pass Earth. She corresponded with relatives all over the world for many years, and 97 of them attended her 100th birthday party in 1989.

She is survived by four nieces; four nephews; and many grandnieces, grandnephews, great-grandnieces and great-grandnephews.

I= The family suggested memorial contributions to Broadmead. Sister Mary Agnes Barry, D.C., a former president of St. Joseph College in Emmitsburg, died Wednesday of complications of a broken hip at Villa St. Michael, the retirement home of her order in Emmitsburg.

A Mass of Christian burial for Sister Mary Agnes, who was 86 and had lived at the retirement home for two years, was to be offered at 11 a.m. today at the Basilica of the Shrine of St. Elizabeth Ann Seton in Emmitsburg.

Born in Syracuse, N.Y., she joined the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul the year before her graduation in 1927 from St. Joseph College. She earned a master's degree at Catholic University and a doctorate at St. Mary's College in Notre Dame, Ind.

From 1932 until 1943, she taught Latin, religion and English at Seton High School. She also was principal of a school in Martinsburg, W.Va., and of St. Martin's School in Baltimore; and was on the faculty of Marillac College in Normandy, Mo.

In 1949, she was named dean of studies at St. Joseph College and also served as head of the division of philosophy and religion. She was president of the college from 1953 until 1955.

She wrote histories of the early days of the Catholic Church in this country and of her order. From 1976 until 1982, she was professor of church history at Mount St. Mary's Seminary in Emmitsburg, which awarded her an honorary doctorate.

At various times between 1974 and 1990, she worked as a hostess at the Seton Shrine Center of the provincial headquarters of her order in Emmitsburg.

She is survived by a sister, Anastasia Annaly of Skaneateles, N.Y.

Frank Redford

Merchant, timekeeper

Frank Redford, a retired timekeeper for the Bendix Radio Division in Towson and a former shoe store owner, died Tuesday of pneumonia at the Charlestown Retirement Community.

Services for Mr. Redford, who was 96, were to be conducted at 10 a.m. today at Epiphany Episcopal Church, 2216 Pot Spring Road in Timonium.

He had lived at Charlestown for seven years.

He retired 25 years ago after 10 years of service with Bendix. He had also owned the Esquire Shoe Store in Northwest Baltimore for many years.

A native of the Richmond, Va., area, he served in the Army during World War I. After the war, he came to Baltimore to manage the Newark Shoe store.

Fond of growing fruit, vegetables and roses, Mr. Redford also liked to travel and spent winters in Florida after his retirement.

He was a former member of the Ascension, Prince of Peace and Holy Comforter Episcopal churches.

His wife, the former Miriam R. Wilmer, died in April.

He is survived by two daughters, Nancy R. Brown of Cockeysville and Miriam R. Verry of Baltimore; three grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

The family suggested memorial contributions to Epiphany Episcopal Church.


Dorothy Kirsten

Lyric soprano

Lyric soprano Dorothy Kirsten, an opera prima donna who dedicated her later years to supporting Alzheimer's disease research, died Wednesday in Los Angeles of complications from a stroke.

The 82-year-old singer was best known for her roles in "Madame Butterfly," "Tosca" and "Manon Lescaut." She retired abruptly in 1982 upon learning that her husband, neurologist Dr. John Douglas French, had Alzheimer's disease. Dr. French died in 1989.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.