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Harry Glenn Frush

July 24, 2010|By MARLO BARNHART
  • Harry Frush is shown in his police uniform in this picture taken in 1951.
Submitted photo,

Editor's note: Each Sunday, The Herald-Mail runs "A Life Remembered." Each story in this continuing series takes a look back -- through the eyes of family, friends, co-workers and others -- at a member of the community who died recently. Today's "A Life Remembered" is about Harry Glenn Frush, who died July 10 at the age of 88. His obituary appeared in the July 12 edition of The Herald-Mail.

Glenda Frush's first impression of her father was how big and strong and muscular he was.

"Daddy was the tallest oak in the forest ... there was nothing he couldn't do," she said while struggling to adjust to life without her beloved father, Harry Glenn Frush, who died July 10 at the age of 88.

The oldest of three children of Harry and Anna Frush, Glenda said her father could fix anything.

"When he got done working on something, it worked," she said.

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Glenda said her name stems from the fact that everyone thought she was going to be a boy.

"He was a real jokester, a big kid," she said. "He always had a big ornery laugh."

It was a powerful legacy for a man most knew as a veteran officer with the Hagerstown Police Department and later as a bailiff for the District Court of Maryland.

"He was about 35 years old and a policeman when I was born," said son Steve Frush, the youngest of the three children.

Though Harry mostly worked the day shift, the family still was aware that the job he held was a little different from the typical 9-to-5 job.

"There was a lot of stress in his work, but he was fair," Steve said.

That fairness also was a factor on the home front when Glenda, Steve and James were growing up.

Steve recalled that his father always kept his weapon hidden away so the children couldn't find it.

One of the ways that Harry had for cutting through the demands of his police work was to periodically take the family to their beloved vacation cabin, where they not only could get away, but work on it together, bringing them closer to each other.

"We went fishing and boating, but mostly, we worked on the cabin," Steve said.

Harry also had a weakness for ice cream, especially the French vanilla flavor that was so yellow, Steve said.

Harry rarely talked about his work with his family. Much of that stemmed from a tragic incident at City Park when Harry's partner accidentally was electrocuted while they were on a call.

"Dad would only say that he was lucky to be alive," Steve said.

Harry's wife, Anna, held down the home front while he worked, Steve said. Anna, who died in 1999, also was the one who took the children to church through the years. Harry later was saved and he also began going to church.

As is often the case, Harry was faced with the prospect of being alone after his beloved wife died 11 years ago. But fate stepped in and Harry became reacquainted with Irene Baker, a girlfriend he dated before Anna.

"Harry was six years older than me when we met in school and fell in love," Irene said. "We dated and then I wrote to him when he was in the military service during World War II."

Working then at the Potomac Diner, Irene said she and Harry resumed their courtship after the war, but only briefly.

"He met Anna and they got married in 1946," she said. "I got married in 1947, moved to Michigan and worked for the phone company for 18 years."

In 1993, Irene's husband died. Six years later, Harry's wife died and Irene sent him a card. They got together again, and in Harry's case, just in time.

Harry had a heart attack and needed care, so Irene moved him into her home.

"It worked out well. We knew the same people and enjoyed taking care of animals," she said. "We were good for each other and had a wonderful life together."

Both Steve and Glenda were happy about the fateful reunion, especially since it made their father so happy.

"God was good to us for those 10 years," Irene said. "Steve and Glenda are like my own kids."

Harry was "Pop Pop" to his grandchildren, including grandson, Michael Frush, now 18. His father, Steve, said he was at one of his son's games for the American Legion team, the Williamsport Nationals, just after Harry died when he noticed a new addition to Michael's baseball cap.

"Under the bill, Michael had written 'Pop Pop' and 'RIP,'" Steve said.

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