Baltimore’s greatest public servant, a former city councilman, was found dead in the woods of southern New Jersey, having fallen down a steep hill. He was killed either by the traumatic impact of his fall or from blood loss as he lay upon the dead autumn leaves after his fall. We had hosted this man in our townhome on several evenings, and we were inspired by his understanding of city politics and by his explanations of how the state of political affairs had become so abject, a reality which chilled everyone at the table. Because he was a publicly thinking man, he was voted out of office after a single term, and had failed in several subsequent bids for local office. When we learned he had died, we recalled that he had been our first true friend in the city. He was a tireless critic of the local social structure and never hesitated to inform the Sun of his specific opinions concerning his lesser colleagues. We sympathized with him because, like us, he had always accepted misery with open arms and understood that he could only serve by dedicating himself to sharing this misery. The cause of his fall was unclear, and many assumed his death was a suicide because of the pain in which he lived his life. These people who insist that he killed himself also insist that his tragedy was a result of his attitude in life, while a fair analysis of his life would, in reality, reveal that he was ruined by the ignorance of his city who shut him up as it has so many.
Photo by Tobias Scheck