Washington County particular schooling flourished with Evelyn Trovinger

Editor’s note: The Herald-Mail publishes “A Life Remembered” every Sunday. Each story in this ongoing series looks back – through the eyes of family, friends, co-workers, and others – at a recently deceased member of the community. Today’s “A Life Remembered” is about Evelyn Trovinger, who died on July 24th at the age of 97. Trovinger’s obituary was posted on the Herald-Mail Media website that same day.

Parents of developmentally disabled children in Washington County can see the legacy of people like Evelyn Trovinger, who worked to identify students’ educational needs and create learning facilities for them.

The field work of the Leitersburger goes back to the year 1958, when she was teaching special needs education specialists together with four other teachers. They taught at the so-called Halfway School, an elementary school that, according to their daughters Marian Griffith from Smithsburg and Margo Trovinger from Washington, DC, is now the Lincolnshire Elementary School

As the classes grew, they expanded into other facilities, including what was known as the North Street School, now located next to the Robert W. Johnson Community Center on Jonathan Street, her daughters said.

Evelyn Trovinger was an early special needs teacher in Washington County and was instrumental in building educational programs for students with developmental disabilities.

Evelyn became the principal of North Street School and continued to help set up the county’s special education system.

By the 1960s, vocational schools became commonplace, and support for similar facilities for students with developmental disabilities increased, Marian said.

Kemp Horn Vocational Training Center

Evelyn attended special needs vocational schools in Philadelphia, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, and Fishersville, Virginia with former Washington County Superintendent of Schools William E. Brish and a local special education director.

They pushed for a facility here, and in 1972 state and federal funding was received to build the Kemp Horn Vocational Center along Georgetown Road in the Smithsburg area. The property was the site of an existing dormitory for children and adults that was named after a. local minister was named.

Evelyn was named headmistress while also serving on the North Street School board of directors, Marian said.

“She also worked to raise scholarships and the money to provide the programs,” said her daughter Margo of working at the Kemp Horn Vocational Center.

Marian said her mother knew it wouldn’t be easy to oversee two schools for developmentally disabled students. One of the challenges was getting adaptive gear for the kids, she said.

Evelyn Trovinger, seated, was the principal at Marshall Street School when students honored her by serenading her with the song

Evelyn organized fundraising campaigns such as an “Apple Sauce Kick-off Day” on April 9, 1973 in Hagerstown. Apples for the sauce came from trees at the Kemp Horn Vocational Center, and Evelyn arranged for President Nixon’s daughter Julie Nixon Eisenhower to appear at the event along with a member of the Baltimore Colts, Marian said.

In return for a donation, the event participants had the opportunity to talk to the guests of honor.

Another fundraiser on April 18, 1974 was a “Ride A Bike” event where riders collected donations. The 24-mile route stretched through the county and Hagerstown.

Marshall Street School

In the meantime, educational facilities for students with developmental disabilities have been expanded in Hagerstown.

Discussions revolved around building a school for the students on Marshall Street, and Evelyn worked with architects, contractors, and civil servants in 1976 to complete what is now known as the Marshall Street School / Job Development Program and provide vocational training for special schools offers students between the ages of 14 and 21. The vocational development program was the former Kemp Horn vocational training center.

Evelyn was born on April 2, 1924 in New York City. She earned a bachelor’s degree from New Jersey City University in 1945 and a master’s degree in education from Western Maryland College in 1965.

There was an increased demand for nurses during World War II, and Evelyn helped meet that need by enrolling with the U.S. Cadet Nursing Corps at Jersey City Medical Center.

Evelyn Trovinger, then Evelyn Schuler, spends her last night in Honolulu before setting off for a job in New Jersey.  Frank Trovinger, who sits next to her, was wounded in the attack on Pearl Habor in World War II and later returned to the area after completing his military service.  He didn't want to leave Honolulu, but love won and he eventually went east to continue his relationship with Evelyn.  They married in 1948.

Her husband Frank, who died in 1985, was in the US Army and was injured in the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Frank received treatment and served in the Philippines and other South Pacific areas. After his military service, he returned to Honolulu, where he met Evelyn, who worked there as a nurse.

Their relationship developed, but she moved back to New Jersey to find a job at Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City.

Frank wanted to stay in Hawaii but love won and he moved to his home in Hagerstown, where he continued remote advertising with Evelyn, who lived in Woodbridge, NJ

They married in 1948. The couple had a third child, Mark, who lives in Sabillasville.

When Evelyn was finishing her cadet nursing training at Jersey City Medical Center, she and four of her close classmates considered their final year together on Christmas 1944. They decided to buy each other four friendship rings and have their initials engraved on them.

They wore the rings all their lives and passed them on to their children.

“In the last few years of her life, my mother took the ring out of a box and said, ‘They are all gone, except me,’ ‘said Marian.

“She really set an example of what we should all be: get as much education as possible, use your knowledge for the benefit of others, sacrifice for the love of your country, give selflessly to your community and be the best of parents. ” you know how, ”said Marian.

Evelyn Trovinger, top right, poses with friends who served with her in the US Cadet Nursing Corps.  The organization helps meet the demand for nurses during World War II.  Without knowing where they would be sent, the five friends bought friendship rings and had their initials engraved on them.  They kept the rings for life.  From the left in the first row are Sybil Kunkel, Ruth Ann Davison and Annabelle Stave.  With Trovinger behind her is Geraldine Steinberger.


Don’t miss these tips!

We don’t spam! Read our privacy policy for more info.