Anthony Raymond Brooks, 82, veteran, police officer

June 04, 2006|By SANDY ALEXANDER | SANDY ALEXANDER,SUN REPORTER

Anthony Raymond Brooks, a World War II veteran and former Baltimore police officer, died Tuesday of complications from pneumonia at Union Hospital in Elkton. The Chestertown resident was 82.

Mr. Brooks was raised in Baltimore and earned his diploma in 1942 from what was then Patterson Park High School. He missed graduation because he enlisted in the Navy that January, a little more than a month after the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

During World War II, Mr. Brooks was a gunner's mate on several destroyers.

Son Gery Brooks of North East said that his father took part in the invasion of North Africa, then returned to the United States to prepare a new destroyer for battle. That ship was sent to the Pacific, where the crew was part of the invasions of Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Mr. Brooks reached the rank of chief petty officer.

In 1946, a few months before he left the Navy, he married Eugenia Kaczmarek in Baltimore.

He worked for a few years as an electrical draftsman before he joined the Baltimore police force. He was an officer for 13 years and covered a foot patrol in the South Broadway and Fells Point areas.

In the early 1960s, Mr. Brooks became an investigator with the Baltimore state's attorney's office. He later was an auditor with the Maryland comptroller's office, where he remained until he retired at age 55.

Mr. Brooks was passionate about music and played the trombone throughout his youth. He played with a band called The Dukes of Rhythm when he was a teenager, and performed with the Baltimore Police Orchestra while he was an officer.

Later in life, he focused on writing arrangements of Big Band music, several of which he sold to the Glenn Miller Orchestra.

After raising their children in Anne Arundel County's Greenland Beach neighborhood, he and his wife moved to Chestertown in 1971.

In his retirement, Mr. Brooks enjoyed fishing and crabbing in the Chester River and regularly vacationed in Ocean City. He was an avid Orioles fan.

Mr. Brooks was a member of Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in Chestertown. He was a lifetime member of American Legion Post 36 in Chestertown and of VFW Post 652 in Millington, where he held the office of adjutant.

A Mass of Christian burial was offered Friday.

In addition to his wife and son, survivors include two other sons, Anthony Brooks of Severna Park and Timothy Brooks of Abingdon; a daughter, Bonni Snyder of Riviera Beach; two sisters, Priscilla Wisniewski of Hampstead and Marie Davis of Perry Hall; nine grandchildren; and one great-grandson.

sandy.alexander@baltsun.com

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