John Elburn Sr., 76, an Eastern Shore waterman

September 29, 2005

John Edward "Booty" Elburn Sr., a semiretired Eastern Shore waterman and lifelong Rock Hall resident, died of cancer Monday at Chester River Hospital Center. He was 76.

Born and raised on East Neck Island near Rock Hall, Mr. Elburn was the son of a waterman. He attended Kent County public schools and then began working on his father's boat.

For more than 40 years, Mr. Elburn sailed the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries tonging for oysters and crabbing from his boat, Daytona Dottie.

At his death, he was still doing some crabbing, family members said.

He also had been a hunting guide for many years.

Mr. Elburn was a member of the Kent County Waterman's Association and the Maryland Watermen's Association. He was known for his unique miniature sculptures that depicted watermen at work and other Chesapeake Bay scenes.

He was a member of Rock Hall United Methodist Church.

Mr. Elburn's wife of 35 years, the former Ann Coleman, died in 1998.

Services will be held at 11 a.m. today at the Fellows, Helfenbein and Newnam Funeral Home on Route 20 in Rock Hall.

Surviving are a son, John Elburn Jr. of Worton; six daughters, Nancy Lee VanDyke of Church Hill, Rosemary Elburn, Janet Jamar and Carolyn Simns, all of Rock Hall, Linda Ellison of Gettysburg, Pa., and Susan Tauscher of New Richmond, Ind.; a brother, James Elburn of Rock Hall; 10 grandchildren; and nine great-grandchildren.

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