Marian Wingard, 92, ran kindergarten, nursing home

February 06, 2004|By Jacques Kelly | Jacques Kelly,SUN STAFF

Marian Wheeler Cursey Wingard, who for years ran the Maryland College Kindergarten in Lutherville and later was administrator of a nursing home, died Jan. 30 at the Broadmead retirement community after a series of strokes. She was 92, and had moved there from Lutherville nine years ago.

She was born Marian Wheeler in the Baltimore County mill village of Warren, east of Cockeysville, which disappeared after the owners sold the property to the City of Baltimore to enlarge Loch Raven Reservoir.

"As we'd cross the Warren Road Bridge, she'd say her old schoolhouse was just underneath her," said a stepson, Robert P. Wingard of Lutherville.

Mrs. Wingard was the daughter of Joshua Wheeler, who had a farm on Pot Spring Road now known as the Overlook community. A brother, also named Joshua, was a former superintendent of Baltimore County schools. He died last year.

Mrs. Wingard was a 1926 graduate of Towson High School. She earned a diploma from what was then the State Normal School at Towson and taught at Sparks Elementary.

In 1939, she married Millard L. Cursey, a Federal Yeast executive. During the 1950s and 1960s, she owned and operated the Maryland College Kindergarten at what is now the La Paix Day Nursery in Lutherville.

The couple purchased Holly Hill Manor nursing home in 1964, which they ran until Mr. Cursey's death in 1978. Mrs. Wingard remained active in the business after her son, Phoenix resident Millard L. "Hap" Cursey Jr., took it over.

In 1979, she married Robert A. Wingard, a retired marine values distributor who died in 1997.

Mrs. Wingard was known for her homemade bean soup and broiled green tomatoes.

Services were held Monday at St. John's United Methodist Church in Lutherville, where she was a member for 56 years, former chairwoman of the congregation's administrative board and a founder of the Young Adult Fellowship.

In addition to her son and stepson, survivors include a brother, D. Bixler Wheeler of Towson, and two granddaughters.

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