'Dr. Elsie' Scheye of Sinai Hospital

January 12, 1994|By Rafael Alvarez | Rafael Alvarez,Staff Writer

Elsie Scheye, a longtime Sinai Hospital lab technician known to generations of interns, residents and patients as "Dr. Elsie," died Sunday at Stella Maris Hospice after hip surgery. She was 82.

In 1988, Mrs. Scheye, who held a medical degree from the University of Hamburg in Germany, retired from the pediatrics laboratory at Sinai, where she did blood analysis. She spent another year as a Sinai volunteer before Alzheimer's disease forced her to quit.

"My mother was very devoted to Sinai; she worked there for about 30 years and everybody knew her," said Thomas Scheye of Baltimore, acting president of Loyola College. "She lived about five miles from the hospital and, when it snowed, she would attempt to walk to work."

Born in 1911 in Gleiwitz, Germany, now a part of Poland, the former Elsie Schaefer was the daughter of a brewery owner. With her husband, Henry, her medical degree and $10, she fled the Nazis in 1938 and came to the United States. Her parents died in the Holocaust.

Elsie and Henry landed in Savannah, Ga., where Mrs. Scheye completed her residency at the Central of Georgia Hospital.

After her residency, the couple moved to Baltimore. Henry Scheye, who also came ot America with a medical degree earned in Germany, bought into a medical practice on Edmondson Avenue and Lyndhurst Street. Mrs. Scheye decided to stay home with her young children instead of pursuing her medical career and for many years, the family lived in the Ten Hills neighborhood of West Baltimore.

After her husband's death in 1965, Mrs. Scheye moved to a house on Wilkens Avenue near the University of Maryland Baltimore County. In 1972, she moved to an apartment in Mount Washington, where she lived until entering Stella Maris in 1991.

"She was a fiercely independent woman whose passion was her work and her friends," said her son. "Countless children and doctors knew her. Many of the young women she befriended continued to see her after she retired. Her contribution was very personal."

Services were to be held at 11 a.m. today at Ruck-Towson Funeral Home, 1050 York Road.

Mrs. Scheye is survived by another son, Robert Scheye of Atlanta; and one grandchild, Rachel Scheye of Morristown, N.J.

Memorial donations may be made to Stella Maris Hospice, 2300 Dulaney Valley Road, Baltimore 21204.

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