Wallace S. Dooley, 87, Social Security worker

April 11, 2004

Wallace S. Dooley, a retired Social Security Administration official, died from complications of a stroke Monday at Frederick Villa Nursing Home in Catonsville. He was 87 and resided for many years in Catonsville.

Mr. Dooley was born in Chicago and was raised in Springfield, Ill., and Fort Wayne, Ind. As a youth, he lived for several years in Sydney, Australia, and traveled to the East Indies, China and Japan.

He earned his bachelor's degree in 1940 from the University of Illinois, where he had been editorial page editor of the Illini, the university's daily campus newspaper. He worked for the Associated Press and the Social Security Administration before enlisting in the Army in 1943.

Mr. Dooley was seriously injured in a jeep accident and, while recuperating at Thayer Hospital in Nashville, Tenn., edited the Army camp's newspaper. He was discharged with the rank of sergeant in 1946.

He rejoined the SSA and served as a district manager in Philadelphia and Pittsburgh. He moved to Baltimore in 1955 and served as a press officer in the agency's office of public information.

He was recognized by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1967 for his work during the establishment of Medicare. He was working at the SSA's Woodlawn headquarters at the time of his retirement in 1974.

An avid letter writer, Mr. Dooley enjoyed keeping in touch with family members and friends through his carefully typed communications. He also enjoyed reading and was an Orioles fan.

For the past three years, Mr. Dooley lived at Paradise Assisted Living in Catonsville.

Mr. Dooley was a congregant of St. Agnes Roman Catholic Church, 5422 Old Frederick Road, where a Mass of Christian burial will be offered at 10 a.m. tomorrow.

In addition to his wife of 60 years, the former Valerie Berens, Mr. Dooley is survived by three sons, William K. Dooley of Baltimore, Raymond C. Dooley of Howth, Ireland, and Kevin M. Dooley of Hunt Valley; eight grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

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