September 11, 2010 - September 17, 2010, The Afro-American
By AFRO Staf
Dr. A. Paul Moss, alongtime YMCA executivecredited with revampingBaltimore’s YMCA campingnetwork, died Sept. 6 at theEllicott City RehabilitationCenter. His health has beendeteriorating since July. Hewas 99.Though Baltimore becamehis adopted home, Moss wasborn the sixth of seven sonsand one daughter to Robertand Ida Byrd Moss on May
16, 1911, in Springeld,
Ohio.A star athlete and honorstudent in high school andcollege, he graduated from
West Virginia’s Blueeld
Teacher’s College in 1935
then returned to Springeld
and married his collegesweetheart, Evelyn.For 17 years, he workedat the Center Street YMCA,rising to the post of branchexecutive and building anew facility that opened in1950 providing a number of programs and opportunitiesfor youth and their familiesthroughout the community.
The national ofce of the
YMCA recruited Dr. Mossand moved his family toBaltimore to help revive theYMCA’s in East Baltimore,where he expanded programsin Cherry Hill and TurnerStation. Shortly after arriving,his wife was killed in an autoaccident.Moss would oftencomment that Baltimore wassupposed to be an interimpost because he was slated
to join the national ofce;
however, he became attachedto the town and launcheda number of initiatives toexpand Camp Druid Hillinto Camp Mohawk. Helater merged camps Conoyand Mohawk to establishan integrated operationthat became Camp King’sLanding.In the process, he met andmarried widow, Elizabeth(Bettye) Murphy Phillipsof the Afro-American andhelped raise her three youngchildren.Dr. Moss committedhimself to serving hiscommunity. For 16 years,he served on the BaltimoreDepartment of City ServicesAdvisory Board, theMaryland Food Bank, and12 years on the University of Maryland Board of Regents.Following mandatoryretirement from the YMCAat the age of 66, he starteda new position coordinatingcommunity programs forwhat is now the BaltimoreCity Community College andvolunteered in local prisonscounseling troubled youth.His achievements andawards are numerous. Hewas a dedicated and devotedlifetime member of AlphaPhi Alpha Fraternity and St.James Episcopal Church.“I remember howcommitted Dr. Moss wasto helping Bettye Mosskeep her column in thepaper while she was sick,”said Talibah Chikwendu,executive editor of the
AFRO American Newspapers.
“Hewas kind and quiet, but hemade sure we understood andwere prepared to carry outher instructions. He was apleasure to talk to and workwith.”Dr. Moss is survivedby two daughters, the Rev.Dr. Marie Murphy PhillipsBraxton and Rachael Murphy
Phillips Humphrey; two
sons, Michael A. Moss andBenjamin Murphy Phillips
IV; foster daughter, FayeA. Houston Faulield;
three sons-in-laws, theRev. Dr. Ronald Braxton,Vernon Humphrey and the
Rev. William Faulield;
daughters- in-law, Betty
Moss and Felicia Hasal; nine
grandchildren, Shannon andDerek Braxton, Carl andGiana Marie Humphrey,Lynelle and BenjaminPhillips V, Michael Lowery,and Sonia and Tonia Mossand many friends and familymembers.
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Safe Sleep Can Prevent SIDS
Continued from A1
representative Vicky Daviswent through an item by itemchecklist that she compiledon the spot. The list coveredthe issues addressed at themeeting including whatseemed to be an overall lackof communication betweenresidents and management.The Deputy HousingCommissioner forCommunity ServicesReginald Scriber left themeeting with a promise forresidents and a stern warningfor Edgewood Management.Scriber said that both the
police and re department
will be onsite in the coming
weeks. Fire ofcials will
conduct a code enforcementinspection and report anyviolations found directly tohim. “I want to give themthe chance to address thesematters. But I don’t wantto come back here in a fewweeks and nothing has beenresolved. That would be abad situation,” said Scriber.Marvin Cheatham, formerBaltimore NAACP president,said he was in attendance asa neighbor and communityactivist. Cheatham said heinvited numerous city, state
and elected ofcials to the
meeting to make sure that themanagement company “doesthe right thing.”
“We are here to nd
solutions,” he said before anearly departure, “and to openthe lines of communicationbetween management andresidents in a respectfulmanner.” Cheatham told thecrowded room that he was inthe midst of a trial and hadasked to be excused to attendthe meeting.these neighborhoods willreceive funding and trainingto spread the word about safesleeping for infants in thecity. New mothers will alsoview a video on safe sleepingbefore being discharged fromany one of the city’s birthinghospitals.O’Keefe advises parentsand caregivers to follow theABCs of safe sleeping for aninfant – alone, on their back,and in a crib. Babies shouldsleep that way throughout
their rst year, she advises,
to help lower the risks of apreventable death.“If you take all other riskfactors away, a baby sleepingon its tummy is three timesmore likely to die duringsleep than a baby sleepingon its back,” said O’Keefe.Though this might be acomfortable position for ababy that allows them to sleepmore deeply, it also increaseschances that an infant mightchoke and be unable to getan adequate air supply todeveloping lungs.“National data in sleepposition studies shows thatAfrican Americans have ahigher incidence of stomachsleeping for infants,” saidStephanie Regenold, senioradvisor for the Babies bornHealthy Initiative in BCHD.“It’s roughly double theincidence of stomach sleepingamongst Caucasians, so that’s
denitely something that
contributes to the disparitythat we see, especially inBaltimore City,” she said.Regenold and O’Keefeboth agree that traditional andhistorical knowledge aboutinfant sleeping habits could bea cultural thing passed downthrough generations from wellmeaning grandparents, aunts,uncles, and other familymembers and caregivers.“I compare it to seatbeltuse,” said O’Keefe. “A lot of our parents and grandparentsdidn’t use car seats andseatbelts. However, overtime there was real data tosupport how seatbelts and carseats prevented injury anddeath. And that’s the samewith babies sleeping on theirbacks.”“We can’t say that wecould have prevented all[27 sleep related deaths] of them, but we can say that wecould have prevented most of them,” said Regenold, whoadvises parents to do theirbest to lower the risk factorswhen it comes to infantmortality. “For most of thesleep related deaths that wesee, there was a crib in thehouse. It wasn’t being used.What we see overwhelminglyin Baltimore are babies whoare bed sharing, sometimeswith multiple people like aparent and a sibling,” shesaid. To address this issue,income-eligible families cancontact the health departmentfor information and resourcesthat can assist them inobtaining a crib.O’Keefe said the primaryfocus of the campaign is abehavioral change to help turnthe tide of what city health
ofcials are calling a public
health crisis. “We are workingon neighborhood outreach andreaching a younger audiencethrough various methodslike social marketing andFacebook. We hope that thecampaign touches people ina different way by hearingreal stories from real people.This will work as long as thedifferent city agencies andhospitals are working togetherand giving people the samemessage. And we’re doingthat,” she said.
Currie is the latest targetBolton House Residents
Photo by Talibah Chikwendu
Babies are saest rom sudden inant death syndromewhen caregivers ollow the ABCs o sae sleeping – alone,on their back and in a crib.
Continued from A1Continued from A1
and disadvantages companiesthat refuse to go along withthe pay-to-play approach.”It is alleged that in 2002,as chair of the Senate Budgetand Taxation Committee, the73-year-old Currie asked tobe placed on the payroll of SFW and used his position
to benet the corporation.
The indictment claims thatfrom then until 2008, Curriereceived over $245,000 inbribes from SFW.Currie joins a host of other prominent local andnational African-AmericanDemocratic legislators
nding themselves in legal
trouble this year.Nationally, longtime U.S.Reps. Maxine Waters, Calif.,and Charles Rangel, N.Y., arefacing congressional ethics
trials on alleged nancial
improprieties. They’ve beencharged with 13 counts each.N.Y. Gov. David Patersongave up a re-election bidamid allegations that heimproperly interfered withthe investigation of one of histop aides, David W. Johnson,over domestic violencecharges.Locally, Prince George’sCounty Executive JackJohnson along withCouncilmembers Camille
Exum, Dist. 7; Tony Knotts,Dist. 8; Ingrid Turner, Dist.4; and Marilynn Bland, Dist.
9, are all under investigationfor possible wrongdoinginvolving AmericanHospitality Management,run by developer ArunLuthra. According to courtdocuments, members of thecouncil attempt to extortmoney from the corporationto get projects approved.
The complaint specically
singles out Knotts forwalking into AmericanHospitality Managementand telling an employeethat if Luthra procured 10“Diamond” members, whichwould amount to $40,000, fora political event in September2009 then Knotts wouldremove any hurdles in theway of American HospitalityManagement projects.The issue of improprietyhas become so prevalentin the county that it has
some candidates for ofce
bragging that they’ve neverbeen investigated for anywrongdoing.“I’m just making astatement of fact and peoplecan make any assessmentthey want,” said CouncilmanSamuel Dean, Dist. 6, who’srunning for Prince George‘sCounty Executive. “I have avery stellar record that I’mproud of as a County Councilmember.”While peers may berunning in the oppositedirection of some of thepoliticians accused of improprieties, it seems asthough Currie’s 40 years inthe legislature have helpedgarner some support from hiscolleagues.“I am saddened that theinvestigation of SenatorCurrie has reached thispoint.” said Senate PresidentThomas V. Mike Miller Jr.,Dist. 27. “Senator Curriehas confronted adversitythroughout his life, and I
am condent he will be
Photo courtesy of Moss Family
Dr. A. Paul Moss died Sept. 6 at the Ellicott CityRehabilitation Center at the age o 99. His is the husbando the late Elizabeth (Bettye) Murphy Phillips Moss o the
YMCA Executive and AFRO Family Member, Dies