Clarence E. Valentine

A former educator and nurse

May 08, 2010|By Frederick N. Rasmussen, The Baltimore Sun

Clarence Eldred Valentine, who began a second career as a registered nurse after spending 30 years as a Baltimore County public school educator, died April 30 of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease at a Lonaconing nursing home.

The former Lutherville-Timonium resident was 88.

Mr. Valentine was born in Trego, Washington County, and raised in Hagerstown where he graduated from Hagerstown High School in 1939.

Mr. Valentine attended what was then Frostburg State College for a year before transferring to Washington College, where he earned a bachelor's degree in 1943.

After studying osteopathic medicine for a year at a Hannibal, Mo., college, he was drafted into the Army in 1944, where he served in the European theater in the Counter-Intelligence Corps.

In 1947, Mr. Valentine began his teaching career in Baltimore County public schools, and later was vice principal at Sparrows Point Elementary School. He later was principal of Relay, Ruxton, Fort Garrison and Scotts Branch elementary schools, from which he retired in 1977.

Mr. Valentine, who "cringed if someone called him Clarence, was known as Val," said his daughter, Mary Lisa Valentine of Sparks.

Mr. Valentine had a second career after he returned to college at Essex Community College, where he earned his nursing degree in 1980.

"He was the oldest nurse ever to graduate from Essex," his daughter said. "He was valedictorian of his class and insisted he get a cap like all the women wear; even if he would not wear it, he felt he deserved it."

Mr. Valentine, who specialized in geriatric nursing, worked at Stella Maris Hospice from 1979 to 1988. He was also licensed in Florida, where he worked during winter vacations at a nursing home in Lake Como.

"He specialized in geriatrics because he said he was 'old himself,'" his daughter said.

Mr. Valentine had owned a cabin on the Potomac River near Hagerstown. He enjoyed fishing and vacationing in Ocean City and also was a jogger.

He was an Eagle Scout and a member of the National Education Association.

Services were Tuesday.

Also surviving are his wife of 64 years, the former Eleanor Elizabeth Miller; a sister, Doris McConnell of Maugansville, Washington County; and two granddaughters.

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