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Morningside-Skyline column for March 28

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Mary McHale

Published on: Wednesday, March 27, 2013

By Mary McHale

Celebrate National Tartan Day at Darnall’s Chance Museum

Celebrate National Tartan Day at Darnall’s Chance House Museum at 2 p.m. April 6. Come enjoy the tastes and sounds of Scotland. Wear plaid to be entered in a drawing for Scottish-themed door prizes.

National Tartan Day celebrates Americans of Scottish descent who have played a vibrant and influential role in the development of the United States. Today, more than 11 million Americans claim Scottish and Scotch-Irish roots, making them the eighth largest ethnic group in the United States.

Reservation and payment are required in advance — residents, $20, and non-residents, $24. Call 301-952-8010 to make reservations. Darnall’s Chance is at 14800 Governor Oden Bowie Drive in Upper Marlboro.

Morningside: 60 years ago

In 1953, the Morningside Co-operative Kindergarten was founded. Mrs. Irene Smith, who lived with her husband Roscoe at 305 Poplar Road, was the teacher, and what a remarkable educator she was!

Classes were held at what was then the Morningside Town Hall, corner of Woodland Road and Forest Drive. At that time, the county schools did not have kindergartens, and many local 4- and 5-year-olds were enrolled with Mrs. Smith. 

Of my children, Mike, Therese, John, Brian and Elaine attended Morningside Co-op Kindergarten.

Irene Smith died on August 30, 1996; Roscoe passed away July 7, 1992.

AARP tax help

AARP Tax-Aide volunteers provide low-income and senior taxpayers with free tax help. They are trained and IRS-certified each year to ensure their knowledge about the latest changes and additions to the U S. Tax Code.

New Carrollton Branch Library provides this service from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on April 3 and April 10. Call Doug Newell at 301-422-6180 to schedule an appointment.

Surratts-Clinton Branch Library will provide this tax help from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on April 2 and April 9. Contact Peggy Moton at 301-292-2188, to make an appointment. Appointments are made on Friday for the following Tuesday.


Gabriela Rodriguez spelled “brouhaha” to become the winner of the 13th annual Prince George’s County Spelling Bee. Earlier in the bee, she spelled “tokamak,” “acerbation” and “fantoccini.” Gabriela is a home-schooled seventh-grader in the Accokeek Center for Home-schooling Support.

Changing landscape

A final plat of subdivision has been approved for 130 residential lots on 54.8 acres on the west side of Ritchie Marlboro Road, south of its intersection with Westphalia Road in Upper Marlboro. They will be part of the Marlboro Ridge community.

May they rest in peace

Edwin Garnet Stone, 94, co-owner, along with Mr. Allen, of Allen & Stone Complete Radio and TV Service in District Heights, died in Clinton on Feb. 15. He grew up in Hyattstown, graduated from Rockville High in 1935 and attended Benjamin Franklin University in Washington. His first jobs were as elevator operator and bellboy at the Harris Hotel and later as manager of the Benedick Hotel. At the Benedick, he met his future wife, Thelma. After the television field changed, he was an insurance agent for Home Beneficial Life Insurance Company until retirement in 1982. Edwin and Thelma enjoyed duckpin bowling and were part of several teams at Marlow Heights and Suitland. Thelma died in January 2011. Survivors include sons Edwin Jr. and William, six grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.

Francis Charles Belcher, 90, of Hillcrest Heights, a retired Air Force major who went on to spend 20 years as a special agent with what is now the Defense Department’s Defense Security Service, died Feb. 3 at Charlotte Hall Veterans Home. He was a 1951 graduate of the University of Maryland and a member of Holy Family Church. He enjoyed golfing at Andrews. He is survived by his wife of 66 years, Gladys Vantaman Belcher, a son, two daughters, six grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.


Happy birthday to Ben Surratt and Kimberly Smith, March 29; Akwete Bedewi, March 30; Mark Cummings, March 31; Wayne Booth, Susan Frostbutter, Douglas Mangum and James Whipple, April 1; Melissa Lytton, Sophia Cordero, Doris Bowers, and Bernie Saylor, April 3; Motoko Howard, April 4; Earlene Erhardt Righter, Jimmy Shipman and Kaitlin Woods, April 5.

Happy anniversary to Antoinette and Charles Mattison on March 29 and to Walter and Fannie Dimes, their 24th on April 1. 

And I have a correction: My daughter Kathleen Shearer and her husband Jim celebrated their 27th (not their 23rd) anniversary on March 22. 

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