Francis Joseph Ruppel, 87, locomotive engineer

November 22, 2003

Francis Joseph Ruppel, a retired Conrail locomotive engineer, died of pneumonia Nov. 15 at Upper Chesapeake Medical Center in Bel Air. He was 87.

Mr. Ruppel was born in Baltimore and raised in Highlandtown. He attended Polytechnic Institute. During the 1930s, he was a member of the Maryland Bicycle Club and won its Harry E. Glock Memorial Race from 1932 to 1934.

He went to work in 1936 as a fireman for the Pennsylvania Railroad. After being promoted to engineer, he was assigned to freight service. He later operated passenger trains until retiring in 1976.

He was a member of Local 52 of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers.

Mr. Ruppel, a Harford County resident who had lived for many years in Carsins Run and recently in Forest Hill, was married for 57 years to the former Mildred Bowman, who died in 1998.

He enjoyed golfing and playing cards. He also liked spending winters at a second home in Lady Lake, Fla.

Services were held Thursday.

Surviving are a son, Francis John Ruppel of Street; a daughter, Kay R. Connors of Forest Hill; a sister, Margaret "Toots" Denk of Westminster; five grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

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