Laurena Shields, 70, nurse, operated restaurant Laurena...

March 04, 2002

Laurena Shields, 70, nurse, operated restaurant

Laurena Shields, a retired nurse who operated a Cherry Hill seafood carryout restaurant, died Wednesday from complications of diabetes at her home. She was 70 and had lived in the same house on Larue Square in Cherry Hill since 1956.

Born in Fort Barnwell, N.C., the former Laurena Whitfield graduated from Newbold Training School in Craven County, N.C., then continued her education at a Tennessee business school. She moved to Baltimore with several cousins during the 1950s to attend nursing school at the former Baltimore City Hospitals and to seek a better life, said her daughter, Vanessa Jeffries of Baltimore.

She graduated from nursing school in February 1956 and worked for Baltimore City Hospitals as a licensed practical nurse until 1959. She was married in 1956 to Levi Shields, who died in 1996.

Known to some as "Ma Ren," Mrs. Shields worked with her husband at the Blue Water Seafood Carryout Restaurant at Cherry Hill Road and Waterview Avenue beginning in 1954. After his death, she continued to operate the business until she retired in August. A son plans to reopen the business this summer.

Mrs. Shields joined First Baptist Church of Cherry Hill in 1964, where she was a member of its nurses unit and gospel choir.

Services will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at First Baptist Church of Cherry Hill, 823 Cherry Hill Road, Baltimore, preceded by a family hour at 10:30 a.m.

In addition to her daughter, she is survived by three sons, Kendall Whitfield and Levi Shields Jr., both of Baltimore, and James M. Shields of Hampton, Va.; two stepdaughters, Sarah Adair of Baltimore and Marcella Blackmon of Cleveland; a brother, Nathan Whitfield Jr. of San Antonio; nine grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.

Joyce Phyllis Kloch, 52, personnel project manager

Joyce Phyllis Kloch, a retired American Telephone & Telegraph Co. personnel project manager, died Wednesday of a brain tumor at Johns Hopkins Hospital. She was 52.

Mrs. Kloch, who lived in Freeland, had worked for AT&T in Cockeysville and Baltimore for 29 years. She retired in 1998.

Born in Baltimore and raised in Parkville, Joyce Otto graduated from Parkville High School in 1968. She studied at Catonsville Community College and in the weekend program of College of Notre Dame of Maryland, where she earned a bachelor's degree in business in 1991.

Mrs. Kloch was an active communicant of St. John the Baptist Roman Catholic Church in New Freedom, Pa., where she organized the annual Christmas bazaar. She also was active in its efforts to help a refugee family relocate from Kosovo.

She was a member and past chapter president of the Alpha Sigma Lambda national honor society, and an expert calligrapher. Mrs. Kloch was a member of Bon Air Country Club, where she was learning golf.

A Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 11 a.m. today at St. John the Baptist Catholic Church.

She is survived by her husband of 30 years, Paul L. Kloch; her mother, Ellen L. Otto of Parkville; a sister, Mary McDonald of Parkville; two nephews; and three great-nieces.

David A. Leonard, 59, attorney, executive

David A. Leonard, former Baltimore lawyer and senior vice president of Dallas-based Southwestern Financial Services, died of cancer Feb. 25 at his home in Frisco, Texas. He was 59.

Raised in southern New Jersey, Mr. Leonard earned a law degree from the University of Maryland School of Law in 1971 and practiced in the Baltimore area for seven years.

He met his wife, the former Valerie Valenti of Baltimore, while attending law school. They married in June 1970.

He practiced law in Atlanta and later in Dallas, where he became senior vice president and general counsel for Southwestern Financial Services. He retired at the end of 2000.

Mr. Leonard coached his daughter's softball team and enjoyed playing golf. He was an avid blackjack player and enjoyed family vacations to Hilton Head, S.C., Las Vegas and Alaska.

Services will be held at noon March 16 at Ruck Towson Funeral Home, 1050 York Road.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his daughter, Michelle Leonard of Plano, Texas; and his mother, Mary Leonard of Lancaster, Pa.

Memorial donations may be made to Make-A-Wish Foundation of North Texas, 5005 LBJ Freeway, Suite 410, Dallas, Texas 75244.

Walter H. Turner, 76, travel agent, Mason

Walter H. Turner, a retired travel agent who had worked for Mondawmin Travel Center Inc., died Wednesday of cancer at his Woodlawn home. He was 76.

The former 54-year Cherry Hill resident who had lived in Woodlawn since last year had worked as a travel agent at Mondawmin Travel Center in Northwest Baltimore from 1970 until retiring in 1987.

During the late 1950s and 1960s, he had worked in security at Aberdeen Proving Ground and as a postal clerk for the U.S. Postal Service in Baltimore.

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