Melvin Barnhart Jr., 80

Plumber, Mason

June 17, 2008|By Frederick N. Rasmussen

Melvin Alfred "Toots" Barnhart Jr., a retired plumber and longtime Randallstown resident, died of acute leukemia June 8 at Northwest Hospital Center. He was 80.

Mr. Barnhart, a third-generation plumber, was born and raised in Baltimore. He was a 1947 graduate of Forest Park High School, where he lettered in both track and field.

After graduation from high school, he immediately went to work for his father, who had established Melvin A. Barnhart & Sons Plumbing Co. in 1925.

After his father's death in the early 1960s, he took over operation of the company until selling the business and retiring in 1998.

"The company enjoyed a long and well-regarded reputation for being reliable, honest and fair among Baltimore's inner-city communities," said a son, Melvin H. Barnhart of Randallstown.

Mr. Barnhart was a Mason and a member of the Lothrop and Waverly Masonic lodges for more than 50 years.

He enjoyed caring for the wildlife that lived in the woods surrounding his 4-acre home in Randallstown, his son said.

"He cared for several herds of deer and the foxes," Mr. Barnhart said.

Services were Thursday.

Also surviving are his wife of 59 years, the former Minola E. Anderson; another son, George Don-Lynn Barnhart of Eldersburg; three grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. His daughter, Minola Jane Barnhart, died in an auto accident in 1986.

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