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Former Howard police chief G. Russell Walters dies

By Larry Carson, The Baltimore Sun

G. Russell Walters, a veteran Maryland State trooper who served as Howard County Police chief from 1969 to 1975, died Jan. 13 at the Charlotte Hall Veterans Home in Southern Maryland. He was 92 and the oldest living former Maryland state trooper, according to an announcement by county police.

A cause of death was not immediately available.

During his time as chief, the county force doubled in size and the police budget quadrupled. He helped design new uniforms, started the first county police academy, and presided over the start of construction of the police headquarters building in Ellicott City.

“Chief Walters made important changes to the agency that we can still see today,” said Chief William J. McMahon. “We are saddened by his death.”

Walters enlisted in the Navy at 21 during World War II and joined the Maryland state police in 1946 after being discharged. He came to Howard in 1969 as the county was shifting from the old county commissioner form of government to home rule with Omar Jones as county executive and a five-member County Council. In 1998 he surprised the county political community by running for county sheriff at the age of 80. He lost to Republican Chuck Cave.

Walters’ survivors include two sons, four grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. His wife, Mary Catherine, died in 2003.

Family and friends may call at the Donaldson Funeral Home, 313 Talbott Ave. in Laurel from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday. Funeral services are scheduled for 10 a.m. Friday at the First Baptist Church of Laurel.