Mary Claire Pitts, 84, fox hunter, homemaker

December 15, 2003

Mary Claire Pitts, a homemaker and former fox hunter, died of pneumonia Tuesday at Blakehurst Life Care Community. She was 84.

Born Mary Claire Conley, she was raised at Guilford, her family's home in Frederick. She was a great-granddaughter of Arunah S. Abell, who founded The Sun in 1837.

Mrs. Pitts was a 1937 graduate of Georgetown Visitation Convent in Washington and made her debut that year at the Bachelors Cotillon.

In 1938, she married lawyer Clinton P. Pitts, and the couple lived for more than 50 years in Monkton before moving to the Towson retirement community in 1998.

Mrs. Pitts was a member of the Elkridge-Harford Hunt Club, where she enjoyed fox hunting until her mid-70s, family members said. She had also traveled extensively and visited Antarctica, Africa, the Far East and Europe.

She was a member of the Colonial Dames of America.

A memorial service will be held at 2:30 p.m. tomorrow at St. James Episcopal Church, 3101 Monkton Road.

In addition to her husband, Mrs. Pitts is survived by three sons, Clinton P. Pitts Jr. of Canterbury, N.H., Henry C. Pitts of Monkton and Jeffrey L. Pitts of Wachapreague, Va.; a daughter, Lloyd P. Deford of Sparks; six grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

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