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Obituaries 4/14

April 15, 2002

John F. Saunders


John Frederick Saunders I, 63, of 717 Salem Ave., Hagerstown, died Saturday, April 13, 2002, at Jefferson Memorial Hospital, Charles Town, W.Va.

Born July 6, 1938, in Clear Spring, he was the son of the late John Jacob and Nellie Mae Pompel Saunders.

He was employed by Texas Stock Tab in Kearneysville, W.Va., for five years. Previously, he was employed by Reynolds and Reynolds in Chambersburg, Pa., for 21 years.

He was a member of Sons of American Legion Dixon Troxell Post 211 and Williamsport Red Men Conococheague Tribe 84.

He is survived by his wife, Beverly A. Saunders; three daughters, Belinda Kegarise and Patricia Zimmerman, both of Hagerstown, and Wanda Knable of Clear Spring; a son, John F. Saunders II of Hagerstown; two sisters, Doris Slayman of Hagerstown and Shirley Getridge of Clear Spring; three brothers, Ralph Saunders and Bruce Saunders, both of Downsville, and Ronald Saunders of Clear Spring; 11 grandchildren; and a great-grandson.

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Services will be Tuesday at 1 p.m. at Minnich Funeral Home, Wilson Boulevard, Hagerstown. Pastor Daniel A. Jordan will officiate. Burial will be in Cedar Lawn Memorial Park.

The family will receive friends Monday from 7 to 9 p.m. at the funeral home.




Hugh G. Downs Jr.


Hugh G. Downs Jr. PE, 82, of Hagerstown, died Friday, April 12, 2002, at Washington County Hospital.

Born Sept. 4, 1919, in Hagerstown, he was the son of the late Hugh G. and Irene D. Rowe Downs.

He was a 1937 graduate of Hagerstown High School and a 1941 graduate of the University of Maryland where he received a bachelor of science degree in civil engineering.

He was a registered professional engineer in Maryland.

In 1946, he accepted a position in the Bridge Division of the Maryland State Roads Commission (State Highway Administration). The design of the substructure of the U.S. 50 Severn River bridge at Annapolis and the Potomac River bridge at Brunswick, Md., are two of many of his designs. After eight years, he was named engineer of field investigation; in 1957 he became chief, Bureau of Special Services, and was involved in the design of highways throughout Maryland. From 1959 to 1968, he was the chief, Bureau of Highway Design.

He was appointed the first chief, Interstate Division for Baltimore City, in March 1966 and was involved in the supervising of the Concept Team, a new approach to highway design. From 1968 to 1973, he served as deputy chief engineer responsible for the development of highway design. In 1972, hurricane Agnes struck Maryland and, through his efforts, traffic was restored promptly. In 1973, he was appointed chief engineer of the State Highway Administration and served in that position until his retirement in 1979.

He was a veteran of World War II, serving in the 40th Engineer Combat Regiment in North Africa, Sicily, Italy, France and Germany. In 1949, he joined the Maryland National Guard and served 16 years with the 121st Engineer Combat Battalion. From 1959 to 1965, he was the commanding officer of the battalion.

He was a member of St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church in Williamsport.

He was a member of Tau Beta Pi.

He was a member of the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, serving on the Standing Committee on Highways. A member of the Operating Committee on Design, he was chairman from 1977 to 1979, chairman of its task force on geometric design and a member of the task force of environment design.

He was the recipient of a special award for his contribution to the design of the nation's highways.

He was a member of the design committee of the Transportation Research Board, serving eight years after retirement from the Maryland State Highway Administration.

He was a past president and member of the Maryland Association of Engineers.

He was the recipient of the Governor's Citation for his years of service to Maryland as chief engineer of the State Highway Administration, with particular acknowledgment of his National Guard Service.

He was the recipient of the Mayor's Citation for his contribution to the welfare of Baltimore City.

He is survived by his wife, Lorraine Rottler Downs; a daughter, Tina Deel; a son, Norman Downs; and three grandchildren.

Services will be Tuesday at 11 a.m. at Rest Haven Funeral Home, Hagerstown. The Rev. Mark Sandell will officiate. Burial will follow in Rest Haven Cemetery with full military honors.

The family will receive friends Monday from 6 to 8 p.m. at the funeral home.




Susanne M. Hancock


Susanne Michael Hancock, 61, of Virginia Avenue, Hagerstown, died Friday, April 12, 2002, at Washington County Hospital.

Born May 12, 1940, in Hagerstown, she was the daughter of the late Robert Lewis and Marguerite Michael Johnson.

She was a 1958 graduate of South Hagerstown High School.

She had been employed by the Maryland Department of Economic and Employment Development, retiring in 1988.

She was a member of St. John's Lutheran Church.

She is survived by her husband of 42 years, Kenneth L. Hancock; two sons, K. Michael Hancock and David R. Hancock, both of Hagerstown; a brother, Robert M. Johnson of Hagerstown; two grandchildren; aunts; cousins; and nieces and nephews.

Services will be Tuesday at 10:30 a.m. at St. John's Lutheran Church, 141 S. Potomac St., Hagerstown. The Rev. Edward H. Heim will officiate. Burial will be in Rest Haven Cemetery.

There will be no viewing; however, the family will receive friends Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. at the church.

Arrangements are by Minnich Funeral Home, Wilson Boulevard, Hagerstown.

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