- The Enterprise
- The Recorder
Whether it’s through his and his wife’s work in real estate, the farming community or the many organizations he supported in the county, those whose lives he touched said Carl R. Baldus Jr. will be missed and always remembered.
“He leaves a legacy, God knows,” said William Daniel Mayer, longtime friend and former Charles County commissioner.
Baldus, 83, died March 26 at MedStar Southern Maryland Hospital Center in Clinton.
Baldus was born in Washington, D.C., but spent his life in Charles County with the exception of two years in Korea after joining the U.S. National Guard in 1953. His son, Rick, said his father was raised in the La Plata area and that having stayed in the same area for a lifetime is something that not many people can say about themselves today.
Rick Baldus said his dad was the type of guy who would do for others whatever he could.
“He and my mom both loved La Plata,” Rick said.
Carl Baldus married his childhood sweetheart, Bobbie Farrall, in 1953. They recently celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary.
Longtime friend Tom Mudd said the Balduses worked together hand-in-hand “for as long as I can remember.”
Friend Bob Schaumberg said the two were “immensely compatible.”
Baldus started his real estate career in 1960 with Baldus Real Estate. He also had farm management and appraisal businesses and developed land including business and industrial parks and more than 40 residential subdivisions. His daughter, Bonnie Baldus Grier, recalled when her dad was managing farms, and the two of them would drive around to various farms to check on the tenant farmers. She remembers the old beat-up pickup they would ride in and stopping at a local store for a Coke each time. She said her dad loved the land, and she loved the chance to bond with her father during those trips. Carl purchased his farm in September 1950; Grier said he was 19. He built his home in 1963, and Grier said it’s been the family home ever since.
Mayer said once Baldus started the real estate business, it took off and has been successful for more than 50 years.
“He was truly an entrepreneur,” former state Sen. Jim Simpson said.
What started out as a business run out of a bedroom in the Baldus home turned into about 60 agents operating out of two buildings.
“His footprints are all over the county,” Simpson said.
Those buildings were destroyed in the April 2002 tornado. The Baldus Centre at the intersection of U.S. 301 and Route 6, which houses Baldus Real Estate, Maryland Bank & Trust and several small businesses, opened in 2005 where the destroyed buildings once stood.
Mayer recalled the Balduses being very helpful and instrumental after the tornado.
Being willing to help out and being involved in the community seemed to come naturally to Baldus.
Grier said a lot of people knew the business side of her father.
She remembered as a child him helping out a man who came to the house down on his luck. Grier said Baldus always was willing to help. She said he was a “strong Catholic man” who was kind and loving.
“That was the human side,” she said.
Daughter Teri Rugeley, said, “He always reached out and had time for everyone.”
“He was very giving of his time and knowledge of the community and industry he served,” Mudd said.
Mudd recalled when his father died, and Mudd had gone to his family home to be with his mother. “Carl was the first to the door with a bag of doughnuts. ... He was thoughtful like that,” Mudd said.
The Baldus children said their father was a wonderful role model to them and the community.
Baldus was a member of the Maryland Bank & Trust board of directors for 33 years. He was instrumental in opening Charles County Nursing Home and served as the first chairman of the board. Other affiliations included Knights of Columbus, Lions Club and American Society of Farm Managers & Rural Appraisers. He helped start the Southern Maryland Association of Realtors.
Visitation will be held 1:30 to 5:30 p.m. March 28 at Sacred Heart Church in La Plata. The funeral will be held at 11 a.m. March 29 at Sacred Heart.