Charles W. Kiehne Jr., 78, Meals on Wheels volunteer

August 29, 1999|By Melody Simmons | Melody Simmons,SUN STAFF

Charles William Kiehne Jr., a banking executive who retired and became a volunteer for Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland Inc., died Wednesday of kidney failure at the Sunrise Retirement Community in Severna Park. He was 78.

Mr. Kiehne held a supervisory position in the trust department at Mercantile Safe Deposit and Trust Co. in Baltimore after serving as treasurer for a mill company in Baltimore for 25 years.

Mr. Kiehne doted on his many nieces and nephews and their children and grandchildren.

"He cared about the well-being of the people around him," said Robert Kiehne, a nephew. "He taught all of us not to worry about the little things in life and to enjoy the things around us."

After retiring from Mercantile, Mr. Kiehne became a volunteer at Meals on Wheels. He was awarded the Ernestine McCullum Award in 1995 for outstanding work at the organization's Brown Memorial Woodbrook Presbyterian Church on North Charles Street.

His nomination by fellow volunteers read: "You are loved and respected by your fellow Brown volunteers who regard your gentle, smiling face by the kitchen door as their best reward."

Pam Tice, volunteer administrator for Meals on Wheels, said: "He showed up five days a week and greeted the delivery people. He would ask how things went, help them unload. He was very much loved and respected."

Robert Kiehne said his uncle chose Meals on Wheels because "he cared so much about people, and he was a very independent man. In his heart, he felt he needed to help people that couldn't get around or help themselves. That just really fulfilled him very much.

"During holidays, he had to get back the day after Christmas from family gatherings so he could be there to deliver meals," Kiehne added. "It was that important to him."

Born in Round Bay in Anne Arundel County, Mr. Kiehne attended the original Severna Park Elementary School. In the 1920s, after his family moved to Baltimore, he graduated from Forest Park High School. He served in the Navy in World War II as a member of a torpedo squadron stationed in Hawaii and Florida.

He was a member of Memorial Episcopal Church, at West Lafayette Avenue and Bolton Street, where he served as an usher.

His hobbies included oil painting, theater, church activities and gardening. He also volunteered at the Peale Museum.

A service will be held at 4 p.m. today at St. Martin's in the Field Episcopal Church, 375 Benfield Road in Severna Park.

Mr. Kiehne is also survived by two nieces, Barbara Kiehne of Annapolis and Nancy Hill of Severna Park; another nephew, Stuart Kiehne of Annapolis; and many great and great-great nieces and nephews.

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