Risque W. Plummer Sr., 94, lawyer active in civic affairs

August 20, 2005

Risque Wilson Plummer Sr., a retired Baltimore lawyer who was active in civic affairs, died of heart failure Tuesday at Manor Care Ruxton. The longtime Guilford resident was 94.

Mr. Plummer was born and raised in Petersburg, Va. After graduating from high school, he entered the University of Virginia, where he spent three years and then moved on to law school for another three years before graduating in 1933.

He passed the Virginia bar examination when he was 21 and went to work in Richmond as assistant state counsel for the Home Owners' Loan Corp., a federal agency.

A year later, he was promoted to the agency's Baltimore office, and then entered into private practice.

With the outbreak of World War II, he accepted a position in the legal department of the U.S. Maritime Commission in Washington. In 1942, he was commissioned in the Navy.

Mr. Plummer served as a gunnery officer and communications officer aboard an Esso oil tanker and later aboard the SS George Gershwin in the Pacific.

After the war, he returned to Baltimore and established the law firm of Griffin & Plummer, a general law practice, in the Mercantile Bank Building.

"He was happy there because he did not have to ask permission of anyone to take an afternoon off for hunting, fishing, bridge or golf," wrote Mr. Plummer in an autobiographical sketch.

After closing his practice in 1966, he maintained a solo practice for a decade before joining O'Connor, Preston, Glenn & Smith, where he worked until retiring in 1982.

In the early days of World War II, he was head of the speakers' committee of the Red Cross Blood bank in Baltimore, and after the war was a member of the Selective Service Advisory Board where his work came to the attention of President Harry S. Truman.

He was a co-founder in 1952 of Roland Park Little League and also of the Wyndhurst Improvement Association.

Mr. Plummer, a longtime resident of Highfield House, was a world traveler. When he was 93, he cruised around Cape Horn and then the North Capes, "both ends of the universe," he wrote of the experience.

He enjoyed waterfowl hunting, golf, fishing and spending summers at his ocean front condominium in Ocean City. He was also an accomplished bridge player.

Mr. Plummer was a member of the Society of Colonial Wars in the State of Maryland and the Sons of the Revolution. He was a member of the Baltimore Country Club, L'Hirondelle Club and Wednesday Luncheon Club.

He was married for 63 years to the former Constance Burch, who died in 2002.

A graveside service will be held at 10 a.m. today at Druid Ridge Cemetery, Park Heights Avenue and Old Court Road. A memorial service will follow at 11:30 a.m. at Trinity Episcopal Church, 120 Allegheny Ave., Towson.

Surviving are two sons, Risque Wilson Plummer Jr. of Baltimore and Richard Randolph Plummer of Pensacola, Fla.; and three grandchildren.

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