Claude Parker, 73, activist and crane operator

February 11, 2003

Claude Parker, a retired crane operator and activist in his Edmondson Village neighborhood, died of asbestosis Saturday at Northwest Hospital Center. He was 73.

Mr. Parker retired about a decade ago from Bethlehem Steel's Sparrows Point plant, where he had worked for 36 years.

Born and raised in Wilson, N.C., Mr. Parker moved to Baltimore in 1954 and lived on Harlem Avenue.

After helping to clean a vacant lot at Lyndhurst and Mulberry streets, he was awarded a citation by then-Mayor Kurt L. Schmoke for "outstanding contributions to the community" on May 27, 1999.

Mr. Parker was also a volunteer worker for the United Negro College Fund.

A memorial service will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Vaughn C. Greene Funeral Services, 5151 Baltimore National Pike.

Survivors include his wife of 43 years, the former Carlillie Staten; five sons, Orlando Willis of Harrisburg, Pa., Jeffrey Claude Parker of Largo, Christopher Alonzo Parker of Baltimore, Moses Gary Parker of Bowie and Henry Tyree Parker of Wilmington, Del.; three daughters, Sernartha Brown of Long Island City, N.Y., Beverly Harris of Rocky Mount, N.C., and Vernae Parker Patterson of Harrisburg; five sisters, Elizabeth Baines, Edith Artis and Dorothy Braswell, all of Wilson, Margaret Esther Dawson of Waterbury, Conn., and Inez Roundtree of Elm City N.C.; 25 grandchildren; and 20 great-grandchildren. His first wife, the former Dolores Armstrong, died years ago.

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