Marya Tregellas Strong, animal advocate, dies

She cared for abandoned and injured baby mammals for the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore

November 06, 2010|By Jacques Kelly, The Baltimore Sun

Marya Tregellas Strong, a retired volunteer and animal-rights advocate, died of congestive heart failure Oct. 29 at Stella Maris Hospice. The Homeland resident was 89.

Born Marya Tregellas in Baltimore and raised on Enfield Road, she attended Bryn Mawr and Roland Park Country schools. Her father, John Tregellas, was a real estate developer who worked in Anneslie and Parkville.

After high school, she attended the College of Notre Dame of Maryland and the University of Colorado at Boulder, where she met her future husband, Lloyd A. Tinker, an Army veteran who worked for the Atomic Energy Commission at Los Alamos, N.M.

While there, she developed a lifelong love of southwestern Native American culture and art, family members said. The couple returned to Baltimore and divorced in 1954. She then changed her last name to Strong, her mother's maiden name.

She also had homes in Cape May, N.J., and Sarasota, Fla.

"She was a fiercely independent woman and spent her life caring for others in need," said her son, Lloyd C. "Kim" Tinker of Cockeysville. "She tutored underprivileged children, was a lifelong advocate and supporter of the education of Native American children, particularly of the Navajo and Hopi nations."

Ms. Strong was an animal-rights advocate, a dog fancier and breeder of Weimaraners. Family members said she cared for abandoned and injured baby mammals for the Maryland Zoo in Baltimore. She nursed baby foxes and raccoons and later released them.

Services are private.

In addition to her son, survivors include another son, David Hale Tinker of Cary, N.C.; four grandchildren and a great-granddaughter.

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