Sister Mary Francine, 68, taught school
Sister Mary Francine Johnson of the Oblate Sisters of Providence, who taught school and operated a switchboard during her 49 years in religious service, died of cancer Saturday at the infirmary at St. Frances Convent on East Chase Street in Baltimore. She was 68.
The former Vera Vivian Johnson was born in Galveston, Texas, and moved to St. Louis as a child. She joined her order in St. Louis on Sept. 6, 1946, at 18, and received her habit six months later. She took her vows in 1949.
In her first assignment, Sister Francine worked in the library at St. Frances Convent. Between 1951 and the mid-1960s, she taught or worked in a number of kindergartens, orphanages and convents, including institutions in Detroit; Leavenworth, Kan.; Aiken, S.C.; and Asbury Park, N.J.
She attended Mount Providence Junior College at Our Lady of Mount Providence convent in Catonsville, where she received her associate of arts degree in 1969.
From 1970 to 1976, she worked in a child development center in Normandy, Mo. She returned to Mount Providence convent, where she remained for the next 14 years. From 1990 to 1993, she worked in Detroit and Philadelphia.
In 1993, she returned to Mount Providence to work as a switchboard operator.
A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 7:30 p.m. today at Our Lady of Mount Providence, 701 Gun Road, Catonsville.
She is survived by a sister, Eleanor Mae Edmondson; and a niece, Vivian Harp of St. Louis.
Reuben H. Israelson, 87, drug manufacturer
Reuben H. Israelson, a retired drug manufacturer who founded Carroll Chemical Co., died of respiratory failure Sunday at Cherrywood Manor nursing home on Reisterstown Road. He was 87.
The son of a corner grocer, Mr. Israelson was born in East Baltimore and graduated from City College in 1925. Four years later, on a scholarship, he received a degree in chemical engineering from the University of 1974 PHOTO Maryland.
He worked for a feed company after graduation and made and sold toothpaste and skin creams, often using homemade equipment. During World War II, he helped develop an insecticide used by soldiers in the jungles of the Pacific Theater.
Mr. Israelson began Carroll Chemical Co. in 1940, making and distributing pharmaceuticals throughout the Caribbean and the Southeast. The company was sold in the early 1970s.
After his retirement, the Pikesville resident was a volunteer at Sinai Hospital, where he helped in the ambulatory surgery department and the operating room. Recently, he was honored by the local Jewish Big Brothers as "Man of the Year."
"He was a good guy and he enjoyed interaction with people," said his wife, the former Libby Schulman, whom he met on a blind date and married in 1943. "He had a good life and he wanted to help other people."
Mr. Israelson enjoyed taking his four grandchildren to the National Aquarium in Baltimore, the Maryland Science Center and Oriole games at Oriole Park in Camden Yards. A member of the Baltimore Hebrew Congregation and an avid golfer, he also liked to play gin rummy.
Services were held yesterday.
He also is survived by two daughters, Judy Finkelstein of Denver and Betsy Parsons of Owings Mills; and a sister, Annetta Grott of Baltimore. Jose Pedro Arnaz Harrison, a lifelong Baltimorean who taught mathematics at public and private schools in the city, died of a heart attack Thursday. He was 32.
Mr. Harrison's life centered on education. His journey to a career as a teacher began when he graduated from the business program at Douglass Senior High School.
He attended what now is Baltimore City Community College on a scholarship, completing an associate of arts degree in human services. He attended Bowie State University, where he took graduate classes in counseling, and the State University of New York in Albany, where he received a bachelor's degree in psychology.
In Baltimore, he taught basic math at First Apostolic Learning Center, at the church where he was baptized in 1992. He worked as a substitute teacher at Randallstown Elementary School, taught math at St. Patrick's parochial school on Broadway and taught drama to young boys at an athletic center in New York City.
He taught summer school, belonged to the usher board at First Apostolic and worked in programs for teen-agers.
Services will be held at 11 a.m. today at First Apostolic Faith Church of Jesus Christ, 27 S. Caroline St.
He is survived by three sisters, Tanya Johnson, Chantel Hart and Alethia Bowman, and four brothers, Antonio Harrison Jr., Eugene Harrison Sr., Carlo Harrison and Pierre Harrison, all of Baltimore; a cousin, Deborah Ann Bell-Moore of Fort Meade; and two grandmothers, Fannie Starkes and Mary Spriggs.