Dorothy Rohmer, who worked in cosmetic sales for half a century and was a retired Hochschild Kohn department store manager, died of heart failure Aug. 4 at Manor Care Dulaney. She was 104 and had lived in North Baltimore.
Born Dorothy Kenney in Philadelphia and raised in the Pittsburgh area, she was a 1923 Schenley High School graduate. She moved to Baltimore when her father became the manager of the old Royal shoe store. She lived for many years on Clifton Park Terrace.
As a young woman, she began demonstrating and selling cosmetics, a field she would remain active in for the next 50 years. She represented Tourneur Beauty Products and sold lipsticks, powders and other products.
In 1957, her husband, Henry Rohmer, died and she became the family breadwinner. She began working for Coty Cosmetics and traveled to numerous department stores within her sales region. She taught the cosmetic counter sales staff how to apply and market products. She traveled as far west as St. Louis and south to Tennessee.
"She was always traveling and calling on department stores," said her grandson, Barney Bafford of Forest Hill. "She trained who worked in the beauty product concession counters that all the retailers had then."
Her grandson said Mrs. Rohmer had beautiful skin and was knowledgeable and outgoing. She also excelled in sales and training.
"She was glamorous and dressed in a sophisticated way," he said. "Her clothes were understated and elegant. She wore hats but they were delicate and small, never floppy or large. To me, she never resembled what a typical grandmother looks like."
She continued working for Coty but decided to stop traveling for the firm. She then ran the Coty products department at the old Hochschild Kohn Belvedere Avenue-York Road store. The store's staff presented her with an engraved silver tray in recognition of her years of service at her 1976 retirement.
She then became a phone crises intervention officer with a group called Contact-Baltimore. She also joined the Greater Homewood Community Corp.'s Action in Maturity and was a Union Memorial Hospital volunteer. She volunteered until she was 90.
In retirement, she enjoyed dancing with her beaux.
"She enjoyed the company of men. She always had a boyfriend," her grandson said.
She took trips to Ocean City and Rehoboth Beach and read extensively. She was a devotee of the writings of clergyman Norman Vincent Peale.
Mrs. Rohmer did not drive and took streetcars and buses. She lived for many years in the Northwood and Marylander apartments.
Her daughter, Babette Rohmer Bafford, died in 2006. In addition to her grandson, survivors include another grandson, William Bafford of Phoenix; and four great-grandchildren.
Plans for services are incomplete.
email@example.com Text NEWS to 70701 to get Baltimore Sun local news text alerts