Ronald W. Magness, 62, worked on Apollo program Ronald...

January 08, 2001

Ronald W. Magness, 62, worked on Apollo program

Ronald W. Magness, whose long career at defense contractor AAI Corp. included work with the Apollo space program, died Thursday of heart failure at Union Memorial Hospital. He was 62 and had lived in Hamilton for 37 years.

During his more than 40-year career at Hunt Valley-based AAI, Mr. Magness helped design the lunar landing simulator used by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's manned Apollo program during the late 1960s and early 1970s, said his daughter, Karen H. Weisman of Royal Oak. He also helped train astronauts who used the equipment.

Mr. Magness held various positions at AAI before retiring in 1996 as a program director in defense systems. Born in Monkton, Mr. Magness was raised in Baltimore. He was a 1956 graduate of City College and served two years in the Coast Guard before going to work at AAI.

After retiring, he started a business selling air purification systems. He also taught boating safety classes and performed watercraft inspections. Mr. Magness, a member of the Maryland Yacht Club for 25 years, also played the organ and enjoyed fly-fishing.

Services will be held at 10 a.m. today at Episcopal Church of the Messiah, 5801 Harford Road.

His wife of 29 years, Marilyn R. Kelly Magness, died in 1989; and a sister, Lynn F. Helgason of Baltimore, died in 1994.

In addition to his daughter, he is survived by a son, James B. Magness of Glen Rock, Pa.; and five grandchildren.

Patrick Conrad Flynn, 49, thoroughbred trainer

Patrick Conrad Flynn, a thoroughbred trainer and former jockeys' agent, died Jan. 1 at Winchester Medical Center in Winchester, Va., after a car accident. The former Bowie and Columbia resident was 49.

Mr. Flynn followed his father, Michael J. Flynn, into the horse business, eventually working at tracks across the country, including Pimlico Race Course in Baltimore, the Meadowlands in New Jersey and Hialeah Park in Florida.

"The racetrack, just being at the racetrack, meant everything to him," said his daughter, Erin L. Flynn of Hollywood, Fla.

Born in Lynbrook, N.Y., Mr. Flynn moved to Bowie with his family at age 12. After high school, he attended local colleges and served as an Army sergeant in Vietnam before becoming a jockeys' agent in 1974.

At the time of his death, Mr. Flynn was training two of his horses, a yearling and a 2-year-old, in Charles Town, W.Va., where he had lived for the past three years.

A Mass of Christian burial was celebrated Friday in Charles Town.

In addition to his daughter, Mr. Flynn is survived by his wife of 21 years, Naomi Flynn of Hollywood, Fla.; a son, Paul S. Flynn, also of Hollywood; and a sister, Susanne Leek of Westminster.

Ruth Kalb Kirk, 93, homemaker, Kent resident

Ruth Kalb Kirk, a homemaker, died Thursday of heart failure at Kent and Queen Anne's Hospital. The Worton resident was 93.

Born in Catonsville, Mrs. Kirk attended the girls school Robert Beach School and graduated from Catonsville High School.

In 1935, she married William W. Kirk Jr., former owner of Bill Kirk Volkswagen in Owings Mills. The couple lived in Washington, then in Reisterstown. Since 1990, after Mr. Kirk's retirement, they resided in Worton in Kent County.

Mrs. Kirk enjoyed sewing and was the host of family reunions every year on Labor Day and Memorial Day. "She was very much the homemaker, in charge of raising her son [and] very devoted to her husband," said her daughter-in-law, Christine Kirk of Eldersburg.

Mrs. Kirk was a member of St. James United Methodist Church in Worton, where services will be held at 11 a.m. today. Services will also be held at 11 a.m. tomorrow at Ruck Funeral Home, 1050 York Road, Towson.

She is survived by her husband; a son, William W. Kirk III of Eldersburg; a grandson; and a granddaughter.

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