Chimes ringing again

Officials rededicate long-out-of-order clock in Govans

July 10, 2008|By John Fritze | John Fritze,Sun reporter

Time no longer stands still on York Road.

Elected officials gathered in a Northeast Baltimore parking lot yesterday to christen the new Curran Memorial Clock Tower - an iconic clock in Govans that has been stuck at 3 o'clock for years.

"Our city's working again. And this corner, and the renewal of this corner, is a symbol of that," said Gov. Martin O'Malley, who is married to District Judge Catherine Curran O'Malley. "The people of our district knew they could always turn to a Curran when they were hurting."

The new clock tower is dedicated to the late City Councilman J. Joseph Curran Sr. - father of former Maryland Attorney General J. Joseph Curran Jr. and grandfather of the first lady - as well as his son, former City Councilman Martin E. "Mike" Curran, who died in 1999.

Built in the 1970s, the original tower was damaged after being struck by lightning several times. The Curran family helped raise the nearly $100,000 to replace the tower, which stands at York Road and Woodbourne Avenue.

Bells in the new tower chimed several times throughout the ceremony yesterday.

"I'm just happy to be able to see that this will be working again," said J. Joseph Curran Jr. "I'm glad now this structure that we had here has been reinstalled."

A second tower honoring J. Joseph Curran Sr. stands near 33rd Street.

J. Joseph Curran Sr. suffered a heart attack during a shooting in 1976 when a gunman entered a temporary City Hall and killed Councilman Dominic M. Leone Sr. Curran died less than a year later.

City Councilman Robert W. Curran, who attended the ceremony, is still active in city politics.

"This memorial is such a fitting way to celebrate Joe and Mike for their legacy," Mayor Sheila Dixon said.

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