He started back in 1945, when he was just 23 years old. Now 70 years later at the age of 93, Jim Conboy was honored by Odenton Lodge 209 of Ancient Free and Accepted Masons for seven decades of membership.
A luncheon was held at the Odenton Masonic Lodge, 1206 Stehlik Road on Saturday with more than 60 people in attendance to recognize Conboy for his dedication to the Masons. Several dignitaries from the Masons were in attendance including Most Worshipful Past Grand Master of the Grand Lodge of Maryland, Bennie Owens. Conboy first met Owens in 1946.
Conboy served as Worshipful Master of Odenton Lodge in 1949. In 1960 he became the secretary of the lodge and held that position until 1995.
When Conboy first joined the Masons, they were meeting in the Old Masonic Hall which is known today as the Odenton Heritage Society Museum, 1367 Odenton Road. At the request of the lodge, the society board of directors attended the luncheon and brought two displays with them. One was of the lodge history which included an architect’s model of the Old Masonic Hall, and notes from a walk through of the building during which Conboy described every room as it appeared in 1945, the year he joined the Lodge.
The second was a tabletop display, “Baseball in Odenton.” Conboy is pictured and named in the display. He played baseball for the semi professional Odenton baseball team back in the 1940s. Conboy was a right fielder and played on the same team as catcher Babe Phelps who went on to play in the professional leagues.
The society presented Conboy with a railroad spike in recognition of his 70 years of dedication to the Masons. The spike is mounted and comes with a numbered certificate.
When asked what advise he would offer to younger generations, he said, “just keep plugging away.” He takes his own advise to heart and remains very active: He cuts his own grass and raises a garden each year. The recent snow has had him out shoveling his own driveway. He considers “keeping busy” as part of the secret to longevity.
Current Worshipful Master Patrick Culver, first met Conboy in 1990. Conboy set Culver and Culver’s father on the path within the Masons. “He is like our wise sage, doesn’t say much but when he does, pay attention,” Culver said of Conboy.
The community is invited to attend the Maryland State Masonic open house on from 9a.m. to 3 p.m. April 11 at the lodge at 1206 Stehlik Road. The event is open to men and their families who would like to know more about Freemasonry.
For details, visit http://www.odentonlodge209.net.