Burger T. Thistel, 76, worked for Kraft Foods

May 20, 1994|By DeWitt Bliss | DeWitt Bliss,Sun Staff Writer

Burger T. Thistel, a retired district sales manager for Kraft Foods who was active in Kiwanis International and other groups, died May 12 of cancer at his home in the Loch Raven Village area. He was 76.

He retired from Kraft about 15 years ago, then was a sales consultant for a time. He started working in the early 1950s as a route dairy salesman for what was then Sealtest Foods in Baltimore.

Earlier, he was vice president of Mount Royal Distributing Co., a Cleveland soft drink bottler.

During World War II, he worked his way up to production manager at Bethlehem Steel Corp.'s Sparrows Point shipyard.

Born in Baltimore, he attended the Baltimore College of Commerce, Fenn College in Cleveland, the Milk Industry Foundation Sales Training Institute and the Maryland Institute, College of Art, where he studied photography.

For a time as a young man, he operated a professional photography business.

He was elected president of the Loch Raven Kiwanis Club in 1965 and was lieutenant governor of the Capitol District, heading the Baltimore and Baltimore County Kiwanis organization.

He was named Kiwanian of the Year by the Loch Raven Club in 1960 and Outstanding President in 1965, and won several other awards for his work in the service club.

He was also a member of the Concordia Lodge of the Masons, the Scottish Rite and Boumi Temple.

He was on the committee that organized the 1969 vice presidential inaugural ball at the 5th Regiment Armory for Spiro T. Agnew, a fellow member of the Kiwanis Club who had been Baltimore County executive before becoming governor of Maryland.

He had also been chairman of the County Personnel and Salary Advisory Board, and was a member of the county Police and Fire Departments Trial Board.

Mr. Thistel was a former treasurer of the Parkville High School PTA and chairman of the 1964 graduation committee at the school.

A winemaker, he was treasurer of the Chesapeake Bacchus Club and was a member of the American Wine Society, the Maryland Association of Reveloers du Vin, the Sons of Norway and the Bykota Senior Center.

In 1942, he married Marian A. Niehaus, who died in 1989.

He is survived by a daughter, M. Anita Dowling of Baltimore; a son, James N. Thistel of Evergreen , Colo.; a friend, Elsie Mairs of Lutherville; and three grandchildren.

Services were held Monday.

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