Thomas J. Mooney III, 66, former member of House of Delegates, longtime attorney

July 30, 1998|By Robert Hilson Jr. | Robert Hilson Jr.,SUN STAFF

Thomas J. Mooney III, a former two-term member of the state's House of Delegates and longtime local lawyer, died yesterday of liver failure at Johns Hopkins Hospital. He was 66.

Mr. Mooney, of Timonium, had practiced law in the Baltimore area since the late 1950s, first in downtown Baltimore and later Towson. He worked as recently as last month, friends and family said.

"He got along well with a lot of people," said John F. Burgan, a friend and colleague who worked at the same Towson law office. "He had a way of making light of things. He always seemed happy."

Mr. Mooney, who for many years lived in the Chinquapin Park community, represented the 3rd District in the House from 1962 to 1970.

Constituents remember him as an aggressive campaigner and tireless worker, attending community meetings, always being available by telephone and receptive when people stopped by his home.

"He was really the way you'd hope and expect a politician to be," said Roland Mills, a constituent who has lived in Northeast Baltimore for more than 40 years. "He was a nice person who genuinely seemed to care."

The son of a Baltimore police lieutenant and grandson of a police inspector, Mr. Mooney was raised in Northeast Baltimore and graduated from Loyola High School in 1950 and Loyola College in 1954. He received his law degree in 1956 from the Georgetown School of Law.

He served in the Army from 1956 to 1958 and was stationed in Germany. Upon his discharge, he returned to Baltimore and established his law practice.

"He was always ambitious, always willing to take chances," said Robert Patterson, a longtime friend. "He was always interesting. He was a man who was always moving forward. He didn't dwell on bad things."

Jim Lacy, who had known Mr. Mooney for about 50 years, called him a "true gentleman, a person who could relate to anybody."

A memorial Mass is scheduled for 10 a.m. tomorrow at the Church of the Nativity, 1800 Vista Lane in Timonium.

Mr. Mooney, who was divorced, is survived by three sons, Thomas J. Mooney IV of Riderwood, Patrick J. Mooney of Cedarcroft and Timothy J. Mooney of Baltimore County; a daughter, Mary Megan Wolfe of Owings Mills; two brothers, Kevin X. Mooney of Salisbury and Roger P. Mooney of Chestertown; and seven grandchildren.

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