In Memoriam:

Louise Hintze, a Woman Who Will Never Die

by Collie Wilson
Louise was tough but very loving. I regret I did not listen to her better, or I would not be in prison now.

Louise Hintze of Southwest Baltimore passed away, and I'd like to comment on a lady who had a soul the likes of which I have never seen. Over many visits to her Calhoun Street office as a child I would sit and listen to her giving advice to many people who had trouble in the courts. I've seen her take people in her home when they had no place to go, and she did not even know them.

She had her office up and running first thing every morning. I recall a homeless man walking up the street without shoes and stepping into her office to ask for bread. Hintze took him into her clothing room and dressed him for the winter weather; however, there were no shoes or boots, so she sat him down and gave him a cup of coffee while she sent another lady to the shoe store to buy him a pair of boots out of her own pocket.

Louise was tough but very loving. At 13 I was caught hooking school and Hintze found out. That is when I saw her love shine through — she got me sent to Jessup for a Scared Straight program. A little anger set in, but the outcome of this experience was wonderful, as I never had any more trouble as a child after that.

I then moved on and many years later had to do some community service. I was assigned to her, and her blessed soul was at the same desk running things. She was very surprised to see me, but when I pulled my court papers out she put me in the alley cleaning streets. After she said, "You're going to learn the hard way," she smiled and told me to get to work.

She went out of her way to help many families. She wanted to get me a job with the city, and I was too stupid then to realize all the good she wanted to do for me. I just want it known I'll never forget the many wonderful things Hintze has done for so many. And I regret I did not listen to her better, or I would not be in prison now.

Louise Hintze has not died. Although she rests from the stress of her tremendous work load, she lives on in the hearts of the thousands of people in Southwest Baltimore she helped over the decades, especially those who changed their lives because of her love.

Collie Wilson is glad to receive mail; write him at MCI-H #265720 D-1-22,18601 Roxbury Road, Hagerstown, MD 21746-9539

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This story was published on March 2, 2002.