R. Edwin Disharoon Sr., 93, railroad chairman

April 19, 2004|By Sheridan Lyons | Sheridan Lyons,SUN STAFF

R. Edwin Disharoon Sr., a retired bank president and former chairman of the old Baltimore & Annapolis Railroad -- as well as an avid yachtsman -- died April 12 of a heart attack at his home at Heron Point in Chestertown. He was 93 and previously had lived in Annapolis for 67 years.

Born in Nanticoke, Mr. Disharoon attended the University of Maryland and then went to work for Roberts Construction Co., building Ritchie Highway in the 1930s.

By then in his 30s, Mr. Disharoon joined the military at the outset of World War II and served with the Army Corps of Engineers, heading the map room in planning the Normandy invasion, said his son, Robert E. Disharoon Jr. of Annapolis. He attained the rank of captain and received a Bronze Star before being mustered out in 1945.

Returning home after the war, Mr. Disharoon founded and was president of the Annapolis Concrete Co. "He took a small loan, bought one small concrete truck ... and paid kids on the street 10 cents an hour to help," his son said. By the time Mr. Disharoon sold the business in 1962, it included three concrete and two sand-and-gravel companies.

Beginning in 1960, Mr. Disharoon became a member of the B&A Railroad's board of directors and was named its president in 1963, staying with the railroad until its final dissolution in the late 1960s.

In 1960, he was one of the founders and the first president of Colonial Bank and Trust Co., which was acquired during the 1970s by Suburban Bank and Trust Co., where he remained as a vice president, said his daughter-in-law, Joyce Disharoon. He also served as a vice president of Second National Bank when it came to Annapolis, she said.

He also purchased and was chief executive officer of a pipe-laying construction company, Southern Maryland Utilities, and was a vice president of the Annapolis Yacht Basin Co. marina.

An avid outdoorsman, Mr. Disharoon was a member of the Annapolis Yacht Club, the Annapolitan Club, the New York Yacht Club, the Royal Swedish Yacht Club, the Royal Ocean Racing Club of England, the Sailing Club of the Chesapeake and the Cruising Club of America.

Mr. Disharoon owned several racing yachts and was at the helm in competitions from Annapolis to Newport, R.I., Newport to Bermuda, and three trans-Atlantic yacht races. Among his trophies was the Chesapeake Bay Yacht Racing Association's High Points award for the most races in his class.

A graveside service was held Friday.

Mr. Disharoon was married for 51 years to the former Mary Lucille Proskey, who died in 1989. In addition to his son, he is survived by a granddaughter.

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