Raymond Dennis “Bo” Menton Jr., a retired dentist and Atlantic Coast Conference football field official, died of blood cancer July 16 at Gilchrist Center Howard County. The Ellicott City resident was 89.
Born in Baltimore and raised in Catonsville on Osborne Avenue, he was the son of Raymond D. Menton Sr., a Chesapeake and Potomac Telephone manager, and Carolyn Marks, a teacher.
He was a 1951 graduate of Mount Saint Joseph High School and played baseball.
He was the nephew of Evening Sun sports editor Paul Menton.
He earned a bachelor’s degree from what is now known as Loyola University Maryland and was a graduate of the University of Maryland School of Dentistry.
Dr. Menton became a Navy dentist and served with the 3rd Marine Division in Okinawa, Japan.
“While there, Bo officiated military football games on the island and earned selection to the officials’ crew for the Rice Bowl game between the Army and Air Force,” said a daughter, Maureen Tara “Mo” Doetzer.
He then opened his dental practice in Howard County, initially on Montgomery Road and subsequently at the Howard County Medical Center on St. John’s Lane. He retired in 1990.
“My father was proud to be the first dentist in the county to treat children in the Head Start program and built a strong practice meeting the county’s dental needs,” his daughter said.
He also had a second career as a football official for the Atlantic Coast Conference.
“He went all over the country in the fall. He was gone every weekend,” his daughter said. “He was high energy and went a mile a minute. He was a mentor to younger officials. He was called an incredible line judge.”
She also said: “In the offseason, he carried a rule book around. Officiating was his passion.”
She said that during his officiating career, he worked more than 270 ACC games and 12 bowl games on the field, then continued to serve in the replay booth, as a television liaison, and as an official observer, into his 80s.
“He was devoted to the ACC and considered his football colleagues a second family,” his daughter said.
After Dr. Menton retired, he occasionally worked with his son, Dr. Thomas Farrell “Tom” Menton, of the Menton Family Dental practice.
“Bo worked below the radar and was a charitable guy,” said the Rev. Fr. Christopher Whatley, his former pastor. “He would arrive early for daily Mass at about 6:30 a.m. He brought food to feed the birds. Some people called him the ‘Bird Man,” but I suggested we call him Saint Francis’ helper.
“He was a bright man with a keen mind who was truly inquisitive about his faith.”
After retiring from football, Dr. Menton developed a skill and passion for croquet. He competed in tournaments along the East Coast and was Maryland state champion in his division.
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“It takes a year and a half to learn it,” Dr. Menton said in a 2000 Sun article. “Every game, you find something that hasn’t happened before.”
In 2016, Dr. Menton moved to Miller’s Grant retirement community in Ellicott City. There he founded a croquet club, which is now a thriving group of over 60 residents.
“Bo adored Miller’s Grant and cherished his friends and neighbors there,” his daughter said. “But perhaps my father’s fondest and most successful role was that of grandfather to his 13 grandchildren.”
She said he was a presence at their games, plays and concerts. He thought nothing of traveling hours to watch a grandchild. He was also proud that his grandchildren were college graduates.
He was divorced from Ann Elizabeth Hughes, a former nurse. They remained friendly after the divorce and resided in the same retirement community, his daughter said.
In addition to his grandchildren, survivors include two daughters, Carolyn Cullen “Cully” Veal of Atlanta and Maureen Tara “Mo” Doetzer of Raleigh, North Carolina; two sons, Robert Garrett “Bob” Menton and Dr. Thomas Farrell “Tom” Menton, both of Ellicott City; a sister, Carol Marks Menton of Catonsville; a brother, Ralph Glaser Menton of St. Augustine, Florida; and a great-granddaughter.
A funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at St. Mark’s Roman Catholic Church’s Chapel at 30 Melvin Ave. in Catonsville.