Charles R. Hennick, an attorney, former state official and Civil War buff, died Wednesday at Union Memorial Hospital of cancer. He was 63.
Mr. Hennick had been chief hearing officer and former director of the employee relations division of the Maryland Department of Personnel, which he joined in 1970 as an arbitrator. He was appointed director in 1976.
He left state service in 1989 and returned to private practice.
"He was an intelligent, kind human being who was my mentor," said Judge Eleanor A. Wilkinson, an administrative law judge in the state Office of Administrative Hearings and a friend for 20 years.
"He taught me a great deal about being a judge, that decisions must be tempered by wisdom as well as compassion," Judge Wilkinson said. "I'm good at what I do because of what he instilled in me."
At his death, Mr. Hennick was employed by the law offices of J. Edward Davis in Towson.
OC "He was a specialist in public sector labor law and did a great
deal of litigation throughout the state," Mr. Davis said.
Ted Miller, a lawyer and past president of the Baltimore City Bar Association, said Mr. Hennick "was a real gentleman and extremely ethical. Charlie possessed an in-depth knowledge of state labor law and was highly respected."
Mr. Hennick also was described as being generous to young lawyers.
"He escorted me to my first Baltimore City Circuit Court appearance and helped me through my first trial," said John Conwell, a Towson lawyer. "He was a font of legal wisdom and had a good way of instilling confidence in you. When I'd get nervous, he'd lean over and say, 'Hang in there.' "
Born and raised in Catonsville, Mr. Hennick was a graduate of Polytechnic Institute where he played lacrosse. He earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Maryland in 1955 and a law degree from the University of Baltimore in 1961. He served in the Air Force from 1955 to 1957 and was discharged as a lieutenant.
He was a special agent with the FBI from 1962 to 1966 and then was in-house counsel for the Bendix Corp. in Towson. In 1968, he was appointed an assistant city state's attorney.
Mr. Hennick was a student of the Civil War, collecting books and artifacts and visiting battlefields.
"His life really was the practice of law, the study of the Civil War and his daughters," Mr. Davis said. "If he hadn't become a lawyer, I think he would have been a Civil War scholar and history professor."
He was a member of the city and state bar associations.
His marriage ended in divorce.
Graveside services will be held at 11 a.m. today in Lorraine Park Cemetery, 5608 Dogwood Road, Woodlawn.
He is survived by two daughters, Julie Steinbruck of Germantown and Lisa H. Clark of Stevensville; a brother, George L. Hennick of Catonsville; and a sister, Sara Ann Miller of Catonsville.