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Alva Faulkner was born August 31, 1927 Alva Mae Carroll in Baltimore Maryland. She was the second daughter of Charles W. Carroll and Katherine Bedsworth Carroll.
She often spoke of her days growing up the middle child of three sisters. She always believed that her father really wanted a boy, and so he taught Alva the things that typically were reserved for sons during that era-the Depression and World War II –like changing the car oil. She inherited her mother’s quick smile and sense of humor, and her father’s no nonsense approach and frugality.
After graduating from high school, Alva worked as a Clerk and later as a Secretary for the C&P (Chesapeake and Potomac) Telephone Company. She met her future husband, Donald Faulkner, while they both worked for C&P. He was a repairman and called in to get job assignments – Alva was often on the other end of the line. They were married in Baltimore in 1947.
As with most couples in the WWII era, Alva allowed her husband’s priorities to take the lead in family life. This led to less involvement with her parents and sisters than she would have liked during her married years. She did come to enjoy the almost weekly visits to her husband’s family in western Maryland where family sings and group cooking were sources of relaxation.
Most of her adult life was spent as a housewife…and she was very proud of her accomplishments at that job. She was particular about keeping the house and everything in it organized and “just right.” Keeping clothes clean and in their right place was a ritual that Alva pursued diligently. She ironed handkerchiefs and underwear because that was the right thing to do for her family. Alva took great pride in cooking. She saw it as her responsibility to ensure the family followed good nutrition habits and were adequately fed for the life’s challenges. Though challenges were real, Alva made them seem just part of life and never showed it if she was overwhelmed.
She often spoke of the weekly trips by bus to Lexington Market in downtown Baltimore. Many times this would be a day-long activity given the one hour plus one-way trip and the heavy bags of meats and poultry that she had to carry back.
Family drives through the Mid-Atlantic region were a favorite past time. In the summers, Sunday was an occasion for a ride “up the country” to Upperco Maryland or to the eastern shore for visits to Ocean City and surrounding area. Nearly every trip was an occasion for Alva to remind her son of the rides her family took to the eastern shore when she was a girl. Back then, cars were a luxury and it was a source of pride that the family could afford one. If she recalled it once she quoted it literally hundreds (if not thousands) of times that “the girls” would ask their father, “Are we there yet?” “Just around the next bend” their father would say to the three girls whether it was one mile or 20 to go.
She taught Bible study for kids and would later do this again when she, her husband and her mother-in-law moved to Hampstead, Maryland in 1983. She was part of Emory Church’s baking group and enjoyed crafts (particularly crocheting) that she could sell at the annual church holiday craft bazaar. She became a member of the “Eastern Star” organization with her mother and served in several roles as part of that group.
She was fond of children and over the years occasionally worked for schools and day care facilities. Her face always lighted up when the small children next door in Hampstead would drop by to visit her and her husband.
Baseball was her only sport interest and she enjoyed listening to Oriole games on the radio while sitting with Don on the back porch (and the breezeway in Hampstead) in the summers
She was widowed in 2002 when Don died from a heart attack. After that she kept busy on the computer emailing her son and sister. She enjoyed country music, the popular classics from the 40’s. Watching westerns, particularly John Wayne movies and the Turner Classic Movie Channel became a favorite past time.
She lived in Sunrise Assisted Living in Reston Virginia for three years. At Sunrise, she became a staff favorite because of that pleasant disposition and always present smile.
This is how we’ll remember Alva.
Alva Mae Carroll Faulkner was predeceased by her parents, her husband, and her older sister, Mary Katherine Mosetti. She is survived by her sister, Nancy Carroll Reese, and her son, Larry Faulkner.
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