Leonard M. Levering III, salesman and volunteer advocate for elderly patients, foster children, dies

Leonard M. Levering III, a retired salesman who was a volunteer advocate for nursing home patients and foster children, died of a heart attack March 8 at University of Maryland St. Joseph Medical Center. He was 65 and lived in the Wiltondale section of Towson.

Born in Pittsburgh and raised on Underwood Road in Guilford, he was the son of Leonard M. Levering Jr., a Maryland Port Administration executive, and Mary Francis Miles, a homemaker. He was a great-nephew and godson of attorney Clarence W. Miles, who led the effort to bring the Orioles to Baltimore in 1954.

He was a 1969 graduate of Boys' Latin School, where he played football and lacrosse, and he remained active in alumni affairs. He earned a bachelor's degree in sociology at Thiel College in Greenville, Pa. While on a blind date at a college event, he met his future wife, Cynthia "Cindy" Shafer.

Mr. Levering sold insurance for the Monumental Life Insurance Co. and Provident Mutual Life Insurance. He was later an Anchor Fence manager and sold homes for Coldwell Banker throughout North Baltimore before retiring several years ago.

Mr. Levering was a duckpin bowler at the old Guilford Lanes on York Road. Family members said he competed in semiprofessional duckpin leagues as a teenager. He was also a radio hobbyist and built shortwave sets. He later followed satellite stations while driving — or while seated in his car in his driveway.

"Len was an outgoing, warm person. He was a patient and caring man with a big heart," said his brother, William D. Levering of Towson. "Ever since he was a kid, he lifted weights and enjoyed physical activity."

He was a fan of Navy football and was a season ticket holder for nine years. He went to Ireland for the 2012 Navy-Notre Dame game. He also followed the Orioles and Ravens and University of Maryland basketball.

Mr. Levering enjoyed swimming at Ocean City, where he had a summer home. He was an early riser and worked out on a near-daily basis for more than 40 years at the Towson YMCA. He also enjoyed grilling.

"Len was a giver. He was a kind human being. Anytime I needed any help for Boys' Latin, I called him, and he would say yes," said J. McDonald "Mac" Kennedy, director of alumni relations at the school.

Mr. Levering also worked with foster children and became a Court Appointed Special Advocates volunteer who represented children in Baltimore County's child protection system.

"I spend a few hours a month on each of my current cases," Mr. Levering once said in an interview in the Towson Flyer newspaper. "We get together for a lot of fun activities, like going to lunch, tossing the football around, or visiting the National Aquarium at the Inner Harbor — you know, what normal kids like to do. Sometimes, though, we just sit together and talk — talk about what they're thinking, what they've experienced, and how they're feeling."

"Len had been a CASA volunteer since 2009 and worked with four different young men," said Dan McEachran, CASA program director. "He was a kind and generous supporter of CASA and a great advocate for the children he worked with. He was friendly and engaging, and made an impression on those he met. You weren't a stranger around him for long."

Mr. Levering had also served as a volunteer ombudsman for the Baltimore County Department of Aging for 15 years. He regularly visited nursing homes, spoke to patients and worked with Baltimore County social workers.

"I compared Len to Barnabas, who was [St.] Paul's understudy. Tom was an encourager. He was an unsung hero who worked behind the scenes," said Dr. Tom Blair, pastor of Second Presbyterian Church in Guilford, where Mr. Levering was a lifelong member. He had recently became an elder of the church.

Mr. Levering was an organ donor.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday at Second Presbyterian, 4200 St. Paul St.

In addition to his wife of 47 years and his brother, survivors include a daughter, Sara E. Roa of Barnesville; and a granddaughter.

jacques.kelly@baltsun.com

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