Margie M. Kinney, who worked as a "weather lady" for WMAR in Baltimore during the 1960s, died Wednesday of respiratory failure and pneumonia at St. Joseph Medical Center in Towson. The Timonium resident was 88.
Born Margie Moore McGee, Mrs. Kinney graduated from high school in North Carolina and attended Appalachian State University in the early 1940s before studying radio and dramatics at Emerson College in Boston.
She worked at small radio stations in North Carolina as a staff announcer and at WBT radio in Charlotte as an assistant before moving to the Baltimore area, said her son, Rick Kell of Lutherville. She took a job as a secretary at what was then the Glenn L. Martin Co. in Middle River toward the end of World War II.
A marriage to Richard Kell in 1948 ended in divorce in 1962. To support herself and her son, Mrs. Kinney worked as a secretary at the White House while modeling on the side. Her modeling work led to a job at the WMAR (Channel 2) television station, giving viewers of the 11 o'clock news the lowdown on the weather under the on-air name of "Wynne MAR."
"They wanted a weather lady as opposed to a man," her son said. "She was a pioneer, if you will, in single working motherhood."
She spent three years at the White House during the day while giving weather forecasts at night, catching five hours of sleep at most before doing it all over again the next day.
"It was exhausting," Mr. Kell said. "On Saturdays, she slept."
Mrs. Kinney worked for the President's Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board at the White House, and she was on duty the day President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, her son said. She took a job at the National Security Agency around 1965 to be closer to her Middle River home, he said.
In 1969 she married Alfred Kinney and moved to Missouri. She was an active resident of that state, volunteering as a member of a county school board, as a census taker and as a helper on Republican U.S. Sen. John Danforth's 1982 re-election campaign. The couple lived in South Carolina and Florida after Mr. Kinney's retirement.
Mrs. Kinney returned to Maryland in 2004 after her husband died. She lived at Brightview Mays Chapel Ridge's assisted-living facility until her death.
Funeral services were Saturday.
In addition to her son, she is survived by two stepsons, Douglas N. Kinney of Ormond Beach, Fla., and Scott R. Kinney of Warrenton, Mo.; one stepdaughter, Suzanne K. Schultz of Wellsville, Pa.; 14 grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren. Two stepsons, Michael Kinney and Hugh Kinney, died earlier.