George Washington Hyde III, a World War II veteran whose life might have been saved by an illness that delayed the start of his service, died of natural causes Feb. 4 at the Presbyterian Home of Maryland in Towson. He was 100 and had been a longtime Roland Park resident.
Born in Pittsburgh, he moved as a child to the family's historic homestead on the West River in Anne Arundel County. Later, he would regale his family with stories of his adventures on the Chesapeake Bay, crabbing, diving for oysters and swimming. Depending on the season, he would sail or ice-skate to a one-room schoolhouse. He attended City College.
At 35, Mr. Hyde was drafted into the Army. On the way to Africa, he fell ill with pneumonia and was sent to London for treatment. He learned while recuperating that most of the soldiers in his battalion had died during a campaign in North Africa.
Mr. Hyde stayed in Europe, where he managed operations and distribution of the military's Stars and Stripes newspaper, working with the likes of reporter Andy Rooney.
After the war, Mr. Hyde worked as an office manager for Mrs. Ihrie's Potato Chip Co. in Baltimore. He and his wife, the former Helen Spellman, raised two sons. His wife of 63 years died in 2005.
Mr. Hyde, who retired in 1970, was a member of the Roland Park Presbyterian Church and the Parkville American Legion. He was an enthusiastic gardener and amateur genealogist, tracing his ancestors to the landing of the Ark and the Dove in St. Mary's and to Thomas Hyde of Severn, who funded the Maryland militia during the Revolutionary War.
For many years, he began and ended each day by posting and removing the U.S. and Maryland flags on his porch.
Services were held Thursday.
He is survived by his two sons, J. Thomas Hyde of Towson and George W. Hyde IV of Roland Park; a sister, Edna B. Hyde of Catonsville; and two granddaughters.