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Michael A. Pretl, personal injury attorney and health advocate, dies

Michael A. Pretl, a personal injury attorney, neighborhoods and health care activist and environmentalist, died of a heart attack Dec. 25 at the University of Maryland Medical Center. He was 76 and lived in Northwood and Roland Park before moving to the Eastern Shore nearly 15 years ago.

Born in Baltimore and raised in Hamilton on Woodbourne Avenue, he was the son of Stephen A. Pretl, an official of Slavie Savings and Loan Association, and his wife, Mildred. He attended St. Dominic School and initially thought he would join the priesthood. He attended the old St. Charles Seminary in Catonsville and earned degrees at the Catholic University of America, where he studied philosophy.

He gave up his plans to become a priest and decided to become an attorney. He earned a degree at the Georgetown University School of Law.

In 1969 Mr. Pretl became a partner at a downtown Baltimore law firm. Smith, Somerville and Case, representing pharmaceutical manufacturers, among other clients.