Dr. Frank A. Dolle, 79, dentist who taught pharmacology at UM

October 25, 2002|By Jacques Kelly | Jacques Kelly,SUN STAFF

Dr. Frank Anthony Dolle, a retired dentist and University of Maryland professor who taught about the drugs used in his profession, died of cancer Monday at Gilchrist Center for Hospice Care. He was 79 and lived in the Hampton section of Towson.

He practiced at his Dulaney Valley Road home from 1959 to 1987, taught at the downtown dental school's Department of Pharmacology from 1952 to 1983, and was a former president of a number of dental societies, including the Maryland State Dental Association.

Born in Baltimore and raised on Garrison Boulevard and in Mayfield, he was a 1942 graduate of Calvert Hall College High School. During World War II, he enlisted in the Navy and served as a pharmacist's mate in the South Pacific.

After the war, he enrolled at the University of Maryland, College Park, earning bachelor's and master's degrees. He earned a doctorate in physiology in 1954, and five years later graduated with honors from the University of Maryland School of Dentistry.

While in college, he began drawing cartoons in The Old Line, a school magazine. He maintained an interest in art throughout his life, including sketching and duck woodcarving, and also made his own golf clubs in a basement workshop. He also was a piano player, and liked show tunes and popular music, family members said.

"He was a bright man - and was so well thought of by his colleagues," said Dr. William R. Patteson, a colleague and friend. "He had a wonderful career and was one of the finest gentlemen you've ever met."

Dr. Harry W.F. Dressel, a retired Catonsville dentist, said Dr. Dolle was an outstanding dentist and was respected by his peers.

"When I wanted to know something about drugs, I went to him," Dr. Dressel said. "He had a good sense of humor and always enjoyed a good joke."

Charles William "Bill" Coleman of Phoenix was one of Dr. Dolle's patients and was also his golf partner for 17 years.

"He was so good a dentist, you didn't even know he was working on you," Mr. Coleman said. "No matter where he was, he had a joke. He was a friendly person. He loved people."

In 1980, while heading the dental association, Dr. Dolle took aim at the dangers of chewing tobacco and snuff.

"If parents and teachers could see what we see in the mouths of our young patients who have taken up this dirty habit, they would be appalled," he told The Evening Sun. "The serious consequences of this newest fad must be exposed in all of its grim reality."

Dr. Dolle also wrote to then-baseball Commissioner Bowie Kuhn and Pete Rozelle, head of the National Football League, to ask players to stop endorsing the tobacco products.

He was a former president of the Gorgas Odontological Society, Baltimore County Dental Association, the American College of Dentists, the University of Maryland's Greater Baltimore Alumni Association and its Alumni Association International, Baltimore College of Dental Surgery Alumni Association, and Associated Dental Surgeons of Baltimore City.

A deputy regent of the International College of Dentists, he also was chairman of a program to help dentists impaired by alcohol or drugs.

Members of the state dental group presented him with its distinguished service award in 1990.

Services will be held at 10 a.m. Nov. 2 at the Episcopal Cathedral of the Incarnation, 4 E. University Parkway.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years, the former Marjorie Vale; two daughters, Diedra Beck of Lutherville and Melissa Smith of Towson; and a grandson.

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