Irene Helen Alexander, who owned and operated a beauty shop and later worked at the Social Security Administration, died of complications from Alzheimer's disease Sept. 16 at Sinai Hospital. She was 89 and lived in West Baltimore.
Born Irene Helen Lee in Baltimore and raised on Division Street, she was a 1941 Frederick Douglass High School graduate. She became a cosmetologist after attending Carver Vocational-Technical High School.
Mrs. Alexander ran her own Riggs Avenue beauty shop for many years. She also worked as a Baltimore public schools substitute teacher and as a Social Security Administration computer clerk. She retired in 1989.
She was a reader of newspapers and religious literature, and liked to play pinochle and line-dance. Family members said she also enjoyed spirituals. Her favorite was "May the Work I've Done Speak for Me."
Services will be held at 11 a.m. Monday at Fulton Baptist Church, 1620 W. North Ave., where she was a 70-year member and a former president of the Senior Choir and the Sunday School Ministry. She also belonged to the Pre-Convention Choir of Baltimore.
Survivors include a son, Tommy Alexander of Randallstown; a daughter, Sheila Gibson of Long Branch, N.J.; six grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren. Her husband of 47 years, Thomas J. Alexander Sr., died in 1994.