Meyer Rhode, 84, of Rydal, owner of Rhode Vacuum Cleaner Co., died of sepsis Saturday, Dec. 3, at Abington Memorial Hospital.

As a teenager, Mr. Rhode worked for his father, Charles, at Rhode Vacuum Cleaner Co. in Chinatown. After military service and college, he returned to the company, which his father founded in 1932.

When Charles died in 1967, Mr. Rhode and his brother-in-law, Morris Kleiner, ran Rhode Vacuum. The firm sells vacuum cleaners and equipment and provides cleaning services for office buildings and institutions. One of its longtime clients was the School District of Philadelphia.

Mr. Rhode retired several years ago from Rhode Vacuum, which is now run by his son, Maitin.

A graduate of Dobbins Vocational School, Mr. Rhode served in the Army Air Corps from 1945 to 1948 as a cryptologist. He was stationed in Virginia.

After his discharge, he earned a bachelor's degree in 1951 from Temple University, where he met his future wife, Rhea Ellman. They married in 1952.

The couple were longtime subscribers to the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Mann Music Center and were members of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. They attended performances at the Metropolitan Opera and held concerts by Curtis Institute students in their home.

Mr. Rhode and his wife enjoyed winter vacations in Mexico and Florida.

"He was very extroverted and loved parties," a cousin, Libby Schwartz, said.

Mr. Rhode was very proud of his Jewish heritage, Schwartz said, and was a lifelong member of Beth Sholom Congregation. His grandfather, Abraham, helped found the congregation in Logan in 1919. Beth Sholom moved to a building in Elkins Park designed by Frank Lloyd Wright in 1953.

Besides his wife and son, Mr. Rhode is survived by four sisters and two grandsons.

A funeral will be at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 6, at Goldsteins' Rosenberg's Raphael-Sacks Suburban North Chapel, 310 Second Street Pike, Southampton.

Contact staff writer Sally A. Downey at 215-854-2913 or sdowney@phillynews.com.