Roberta 'Bobby' Daiger, 72, administrator at state MTA

March 28, 1996|By Fred Rasmussen | Fred Rasmussen,SUN STAFF

Roberta M. Daiger, who was known at the state Mass Transit Administration for her skills as an administrator and pinochle player, died of cancer March 20 at her home in Carney. She was 72.

Known as Bobby, she had been with the MTA since 1977. At the time of her death, she was a capital program administrator whose responsibilities included collecting, processing and reporting information used by other administrators to assess the status of MTA capital improvements.

"She kept track of projects and schedule adherence, and had been involved with the Metro, light rail, bus, MARC and freight service," said Matthew Citron, MTA manager of capital project programming.

He described her as a "no-nonsense, independently minded person."

"She was an individualist and stood out because of these characteristics and certainly wasn't afraid to speak up," Mr. Citron said. "She would often ask, 'Show me. Why are we doing this?' "

Mrs. Daiger was a member of a foursome that played pinochle every day at lunchtime and bridge in the evening.

Said Tom Wirth, chief of MTA's mechanical and electrical engineers, "She was called 'Miss Stone Face' because she never let on what she was holding and could handle anything we threw at her.

"Bobby was one of the sweetest ladies I've ever known and was a lot of fun to be around, and she was certainly passionate about playing cards."

"Cards were like a religion to Bobby, who loved life and had a ball," said Bill Polvinale, who is in charge of contracts for the MTA.

During the 1960s and 1970s, Mrs. Daiger, who had lived in Bel Air for 40 years, worked for the county's Economic Development Corp. and J. Vinton Schafer & Sons Inc., a construction firm.

She was born Roberta Melton in Little Rock, Ark., and raised near Media, Pa. In 1943, she earned a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Randolph Macon Woman's College in Lynchburg, Va.

In 1944, she married John Alden Daiger, and they moved to Bel Air. The marriage ended in divorce. In 1985, she moved to Carney, where she enjoyed gourmet cooking, reading, gardening and needlework.

She was a member of the Women's Democratic Club and was active in Scouting.

A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday at the First Presbyterian Church of Bel Air, 224 N. Main St.

She is survived by two sons, Christopher H. Daiger of Bel Air and John A. Daiger Jr. of Reisterstown; two daughters, Calvert Sherwood Necker of Perry Hall and Dr. Roberta Keyhill Sheorn of Richmond, Va.; a brother, Harry Calvert Melton of Ocean City; and three grandchildren.

Pub Date: 3/27/96

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