Dennis C. CrosbyUnion pioneerDennis C. Crosby, who was...

January 11, 1994

Dennis C. Crosby

Union pioneer

Dennis C. Crosby, who was president of the Baltimore Teachers Union in 1967 when it became the bargaining agent for city public school teachers after a two-day strike, died Thursday at his home on Arunah Avenue after several strokes. He was 68.

The first black president of the union, he was elected in 1965 and held office until 1973.

Irene Dandridge, current president of the BTU, said yesterday that Mr. Crosby's "greatest contribution was to bring teachers together and to convince the school system that teachers should have input on educational issues as well as on labor relations issues."

"He built a strong union," she added.

As BTU president, he helped start the Model Schools Program. Earlier, as chairman of the Education Committee of the Baltimore chapter of the Congress of Racial Equality, he had been a leader of a campaign for improvements at Dunbar High School.

At Dunbar, he was chairman of the business department until the fall of 1967, when the union presidency became a full-time job. He began teaching at the East Baltimore school in 1948.

In 1970, he lost a bid for the Democratic nomination for the state Senate in the 4th District.

Born in Hampton, Ark., he was reared in Baltimore and was a graduate of Dunbar. In 1948, he graduated from the Hampton Institute in Virginia.

While teaching at Dunbar, he obtained his master's degree at New York University and did further graduate work there and at Temple University.

In 1972, he became an assistant professor of business education and economics at Morgan State University, retiring from that post in 1992.

He had also taught at the Community College of Baltimore and at the homes of blind students. In night school at City College, he taught shorthand and typing.

Services were set for 7 p.m. today at Metropolitan United Methodist Church, Carrollton Avenue and Lanvale Street.

He is survived by his wife of 40 years, the former Frances Helen Lofton; three daughters, Kimberly Lewis, Kathy Crosby and Keah Crosby, all of Baltimore; four brothers, Garland Crosby of Chicago, Elvin Crosby of Detroit, and Troy Crosby and Howard Crosby, both of Baltimore; and three grandchildren.

Albert E. Wolfe, a sales official for a biological supply company, died Wednesday of respiratory failure at his Odenton home. He was 73.

He worked at home as vice president for sales of the Carolina Biological Supply Co., which deals in school supplies. He started a subsidiary, the Wolfe Sales Corp., that sells microscopes.

He retired in 1960 as a warrant officer in the Army Counter Intelligence Corps. He had been drafted during World War II and served in Europe.

Born in Denison, Ohio, he was an all-state basketball player, a football player and a record-setting member of the track team at the high school there. He then attended Ohio State University on a basketball scholarship until he was drafted.

While stationed in Germany after World War II, he was a player-coach on basketball teams that won several championships. Often named the most valuable player, he also became known as "Mr. Basketball of the European Command." He also played on a volleyball team that won a service championship.

He was active in community affairs and was a member of the planning committee for MacArthur Junior High School and a charter member of the Gambrills-Odenton Recreation Council for which he coached youth basketball teams.

He was a member of the board of the Odenton Health Center.

Services were to be held at 8 a.m. today at Nichols Bethel United Methodist Church in Odenton. Burial was set for 11 a.m. at Arlington National Cemetery.

Mr. Wolfe is survived by his wife, the former Sophia Powell; two sons, Thomas Wolfe of College Park and David Eugene Wolfe of Hanover; and two grandsons.

Services for Kristen Marie Johnson, 17 months, and her brother, Alan C. Johnson III, 2 1/2 years old, were set for 11 a.m. today at the Barranco and Sons Funeral Home, Ritchie Highway and Robinson Road in Severna Park.

The children were caught in an upstairs bedroom at their Pasadena home during a fire Friday.

Kristen was dead on arrival at North Arundel Hospital, and her brother died several hours later at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center in Baltimore.

They are survived by their parents, Lance and Angela Marie Johnson, both of Pasadena; and their grandparents, Jeanne O. Johnson of Arnold and Alan C. Johnson Sr. of Sykesville, and Bruce A. and Carolyn E. Detroy, both of Pasadena.


Sigmund Spritz

Optometrist, ex-POW

Sigmund Spritz, who as a prisoner of the Germans during World War II credited his survival to the American Red Cross packages that occasionally reached camp, died Wednesday of an upper respiratory infection at Sinai Hospital. The Northwest Baltimore resident, a retired optometrist, was 76.

He'd been a navigator aboard a B-24 bomber that was hit by flak during a raid over Ludwigshafen, Germany, forcing the crew to bail out over Melun, France.

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