Frances Carolyn Savage, 47, children's program specialist

March 01, 1998|By Robert Hilson Jr. | Robert Hilson Jr.,SUN STAFF

Frances Carolyn Somerville Savage, a family specialist with the Maryland Infants and Toddlers Program and president of Randallstown High School Parent Teacher Student Association, died Monday of a brain aneurysm at Johns Hopkins Hospital. She was 47.

Mrs. Savage, a Randallstown resident, was one of the founding members in 1988 of the Infants and Toddlers Program, a Maryland Department of Education program that helps parents get help for their disabled children.

"She was very warm and caring, and deep down inside she believed that children were the most important people in the world," said Carol Ann Baglin, assistant state superintendent for the Division of Special Education.

As a family specialist, she fielded questions -- on the phone and in person -- often from distraught parents seeking help for their children.

Friends and co-workers said she never hurried the parents and always offered comforting advice.

"But she did more than just comfort [parents]," said Debby Metzger, director of the Maryland Infants and Toddlers Program. "She was able to lift them to a higher place. She made direct contact and would help them to be a better person."

Co-workers said Mrs. Savage's endless energy inspired other workers.

"She had a wonderful way of rallying the troops. She had a way of boosting everybody and getting everybody to do what they had to do," Ms. Metzger said.

A native of St. Mary's County in Southern Maryland, the former Frances Somerville graduated from Chopticon High School in 1968 and attended the old Helen Field School of Nursing in Baltimore. She was taking courses at Towson University at the time of her death.

She married Vernon T. Savage in 1970 and lived in New York, Illinois, New Jersey, Ohio and Pennsylvania before returning to Maryland in 1987.

Since last year she had been president of the Randallstown High PTSA and had been an active booster of the school for two years.

She was a regular at most school sporting events and doggedly tried to get more parents involved with school activities.

"She was active in all aspects of the school," said Barry Williams, principal of Randallstown High. "She was a positive moving force for students and the school in general. She was a positive catalyst for change."

She was a member of Faith Christian Fellowship Outreach Center in Owings Mills, where a memorial service will be held at 7 p.m. tomorrow.

In addition to her husband, she is survived by three sons, Nakia Savage, Bariki Savage and Jabari Savage, all of Randallstown; a stepdaughter, Tanya Savage of Randallstown; a brother, Joseph Mitchell Somerville of Baltimore; two sisters, Mary Jean Wilson of Richmond, Va., and Patricia Dawn Somerville of Tinton Falls, N.J.; and two grandchildren.

Donations may be made to the F. Carolyn Savage Scholarship Fund to aid a college-bound student through the Randallstown High School PTSA, 4000 Offutt Road, Randallstown 21122-3399.

Pub Date: 3/01/98

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