Ethel Sarah Kidwell of Chesapeake Beach, MD, was the eldest of two children born to the late Florence and William Centerfeit, formerly of Washington, DC. Sarah was born at home in the city in 1934 where she spent her childhood and youth and later moved into the house her father, a carpenter, built in Tuxedo, MD.
She attended Bladensburg High School in Maryland, where she met the love of her life, Warner (Boody) Kidwell. Sarah and Boody married and lived on the upper level of her parents’ home. Warner worked for IBM as a printer and Ethel was a telephone operator. Soon, two children arrived: Jeff and Susan, and shortly after, Boody began operating a business known as Kidwell’s Package Store in Tuxedo. Sarah concentrated on raising the children and supporting her husband’s endeavor as was traditional at the time. Later she began working in the business as well until tragedy struck in 1971 and Boody was killed in an attempted robbery. Thereafter, and in her husband’s memory, she worked tirelessly to construct her husband’s dream of a new liquor store in Bladensburg and operated that business, with the help of her children, primarily her daughter, Susan, until 2003, when she sold the business and began occupying the home she had purchased in 1974 on B Street in Chesapeake Beach full-time.
Once she became a member of the community, she immersed herself in the neighborhood and became a very active member of the town and Calvert County community. Sarah was a member of the American Legion Ladies Auxiliary, Stallings-Williams Post 206 for several years, and volunteered with Calvert County Meals on Wheels, and worked in the HELP Association Thrift Store. Sarah was a member of the Twin Beaches Senior Center community where she enjoyed many classes and activities. Sarah will be remembered as a strong and outspoken Calvert County icon and she will be sorely missed by all those who knew her.
She is survived by her son, Jeff Montgomery Kidwell (a writer and composer), and was predeceased by her mother and father: Florence and William Centerfeit; her brother, Bill; husband, Boody; and daughter, Susan.
A Celebration of her Life and lunch will be held at the American Legion Stallings-Williams Post 206 at 3330 Chesapeake Beach Road, Chesapeake Beach, MD, on February 20th between the hours of 12 p.m. and 4 p.m. All are welcome.
Donations can be made to any of her favorite charities mentioned above.