Aurora Vernita Bransford, 91, science technician Aurora...

April 13, 2001

Aurora Vernita Bransford, 91, science technician

Aurora Vernita Bransford, a retired physical science technician, died April 6 of heart failure and other complications at Good Samaritan Hospital. She was 91 and lived in Baltimore.

Aurora Dingus was born in Langston, Okla., and raised in Ed Taft, Okla. At 15, she enrolled at what is now Hampton University in Virginia, where she earned a degree in home economics. She then was a teacher in Texas, Virginia and Harford County.

She married Hugh Bransford Jr. in Elkton in 1930. The couple settled in Havre de Grace.

In 1944, she began working at Edgewood Arsenal, which is now Aberdeen Proving Ground, and retired after 34 years there.

Her favorite hobby was reading. She also played piano and organ at Greenspring Methodist Church in Greenspring and St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church in Havre de Grace.

More than 40 years ago, she converted to Catholicism and joined St. Patrick Church in Havre de Grace.

She was a member of the Third Order of St. Dominic, St. Martin de Porres chapter; Catholic Golden Age; Sisters in the Struggle; the Harford Senior Center; and the American Association of University Women.

After her husband died in 1969, she moved to Baltimore and became a communicant of St. Matthew Roman Catholic Church.

A date for a memorial Mass next month at St. Patrick Church, 115 Congress St., has not been determined. Mrs. Bransford's remains were donated to the State Anatomy Board.

She is survived by three daughters, Joyce B. Byrd of Havre de Grace, Judith B. Muhammad of Baltimore and Gene B. Hartzog of Jersey City, N.J.; two sons, James E. Bransford of Cottage Grove, Minn., and Hugh Bransford III of Linden, N.C.; a sister, Electa Green of Brentwood, Tenn.; two brothers, James Dingus of Cleveland and Warren Dingus of Washington state; 22 grandchildren; 37 great-grandchildren; and a great-great-grandson.

Miriam W. D. Gaugh, 101, homemaker and baker

Miriam W. D. Gaugh, a homemaker who won awards for baking, died April 6 of a heart attack at Presbyterian Home of Maryland in Towson. She was 101.

She had lived in Northeast Baltimore before she moved to the Presbyterian home in 1988. She was the oldest resident at the time of her death.

At 18, Mrs. Gaugh began making women's hats at the Hutzler Bros. downtown department store, but she left after less than two years to get married.

She enjoyed cooking, sewing and gardening, said her granddaughter Joyce Green of Deep Creek Lake. She said her grandmother won several baking awards, including one from a radio station for her super cinnamon cake. Mrs. Gaugh entered that contest because she needed the prize, a new iron, Ms. Green said.

Born Miriam Elizabeth Watson near Harrisburg, Pa., she was raised in York, Pa., and moved to Baltimore with her family in 1913. She attended Towson High School but left at 16 to help at home when her mother became ill.

In 1919, she married Penrose Clinton Dietz, who died in 1937. In 1940, she married Glenn Weller Gaugh, who died in 1956.

Mrs. Gaugh was a member of Hamilton Presbyterian Church on Harford Road.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday at Presbyterian Home of Maryland, 400 Georgia Court.

She is also survived by two sons, Penrose C. Dietz of Old Town, Fla., and Douglas W. Dietz of Baltimore; a daughter, Anna Elizabeth Dietz Sener of Las Vegas; six grandchildren; three great-grandchildren; and a great-great-granddaughter.

Dr. Herbert Lee Elliott, 66, pathology chief, teacher

Dr. Herbert Lee Elliott, former chief of pathology at Church Hospital in Baltimore and chairman of clinical laboratories at Brookdale University Hospital in Brooklyn, N.Y., died April 5 of leukemia at Brookdale. He was 66 and had lived in Baltimore most of his life before moving to New York in 1985.

He was chairman of the clinical laboratories at Brookdale for 15 years and chief of pathology at the now-closed Church Hospital at Fayette Street and Broadway from 1972 to 1983.

He taught in the pathology department at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine from 1969 to 1972 and maintained a teaching affiliation with Hopkins while at Church.

Dr. Elliott had served an internship in general surgery at Duke University Hospital in Durham, N.C., and residencies at Duke and Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Born in Milford, Del., and raised in Baltimore, he was a 1952 graduate of Polytechnic Institute. He received his undergraduate degree in biology in 1956 and his medical degree in 1960, both from Hopkins.

He served two years as an Air Force general surgeon at Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Miss.

Dr. Elliott was active in the Medical and Chirurgical Faculty of Maryland, the Maryland Society of Pathology and many other medical societies and associations.

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