Doris Wendler, 83, medical secretary

December 29, 1997|By Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan | Cheryl Lu-Lien Tan,SUN STAFF

Doris Valentine Chambers Wendler, a retired medical secretary, died of complications from heart medication Thursday Good Samaritan Hospital in Baltimore. She was 83 and lived in Hamilton.

Born in her family home in Baltimore's Loudon Park Cemetery, where her father was superintendent, she graduated from Forest Park High School in 1932 and completed a two-year stenography course.

She was a secretary in New York and, in 1939, returned to Baltimore. She was a medical secretary in a private clinic for two years before she was diagnosed with tuberculosis and hospitalized in a Baltimore sanitarium for three years. She resumed working as a medical secretary when she was discharged and retired in 1979.

After retiring, Mrs. Wendler, through her high school sorority Beta Gamma Phi, raised money for Johns Hopkins Hospital's infant and toddler unit, where her daughter was a registered nurse.

"She had a lot of compassion for the ones that are overlooked," said the daughter, Lynn Valentine Morrow Unger of Ruxton. "She was very interested in people and wanted to do the best for them."

Mrs. Wendler was an animal lover and donated money to local animal rights groups, such as Alley Animals, Animal Rescue and Defenders of Animal Rights.

Virginia Henze, a sorority sister, said her friend of more than 40 years "always had at least three cats in her house and a couple of strays out back."

"She was overly generous and caring," Ms. Henze said. "My daughter had a serious illness once and [Mrs. Wendler] sat in the hospital with me for nine hours that day."

Ms. Henze said her friend was an avid reader and jazz lover.

In 1984, Mrs. Wendler suffered a heart attack and spent the rest of her life in and out of hospitals. But she found time to help raise her grandchildren.

In 1934, she married Robert Morrow. After divorcing him, she married Neil Dunlap in 1948. Mr. Dunlap died in 1960. The next year, she married Herbert Wendler, who survives her.

Other survivors include three grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.

Services will be held at 1 p.m. today at Ruck Towson Funeral Home, 1050 York Road. Mrs. Wendler will be buried in the family plot across from the house in which she was born in Loudon Park Cemetery, 3620 Wilkens Ave.

Pub Date: 12/29/97

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