Trail Angel Miss Janet is planning a Happy Trails Hiker Trash Celebration at Trail Days in Damascus on May 14, 2016, celebrating Baltimore Jack, who passed away on May 4th, and others lost in the past year.
"Bring your stories, photos, hugs and a box of tissues" to the Damascus Old Mill (215 West Imboden Street at Mocks Mill Falls) at 6 PM.
Born Leonard Adam Tarlin, Baltimore Jack lived 57 years, five months and six days. His life cannot be measured in BMWs, McMansions, college degrees or material wealth. Our beloved vagabond was a pauper by the world's estimation, but a prince in ours.
I knew a man who owned enough buildings to overflow a Monopoly board. When he died, there weren't enough men at his funeral to carry his casket.
On Saturday night, many friends will gather in celebrating Baltimore Jack, and the enduring impact he made on the hikers who weep at his passing. The Appalachian Trail community will continue celebrating Baltimore Jack.
For his loyalty, passion and dedication to ALDHA, the 35th annual Gathering of hikers, dreamers and friends of the trail will be dedicated to Baltimore Jack ... count on ... some recognition, reflection and reminiscences of Jack when the Gathering convenes on Friday, October 7, 2016, in Williamstown, MA.
Baltimore Jack touched the lives of hikers up and down the Appalachian Trail that he knew and loved. In return, he was loved and admired. Yes, he drank too much. Yes, he was feisty.
Scott J Watson said this was a favorite Bible verse of Jack's:
"You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands, (Isaiah 55:12)."
Before anyone looks down on Baltimore Jack, they should ask themselves who will mourn -- or give a rip -- when their paths come to an end.
To the degree that a man's life can be measured by those who mourn his death or by those who remember his humble kindness, Baltimore Jack was a success.
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Baltimore Jack Tarlin -- the man, the Appalachian Trail legend -- reached the end of his trail on May 4, 2016 at Angel Medical Center in Franklin, NC.
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Published Jul 14, 2012.