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Sometime at Eve

September 19, 2017

This is a poem that was read at my grandfather's funeral and both of my parents funerals. My Mom taught typing at Harley while Steve was headmaster there and I substituted for her there when she took a trip with my Dad. I graduated from Harley in '58 and my Mom graduated from Harley in '33. Our family loved sailing, and my Mom raced her sailboat on Lake Ontario. When someone who enjoys sailing passes away, this poem always reminds me of the person. Barb (Poole) von Schilcher

              Sometime at Eve 

Sometime at Eve when the tide is low

I shall slip my moorings and sail away

With no response to a friendly hail

In the silent hush of the twilight pale

When the night stoops down to embrace the day

And the voices call in the water's flow

Sometime at Eve When the water is low

I shall slip my moorings and sail away.

Through purple shadows

That darkly trail o'er the ebbing tide

And the Unknown Sea,

And a ripple of waters' to tell the tale

Of a lonely voyager sailing away

To mystic isles

Where at anchor lay

The craft of those who had sailed before

O'er the Unknown Sea

To the Unknown Shore

A few who watched me sail away

Will miss my craft from the busy bay

Some friendly barques were anchored near

Some loving souls my heart held dear

In silent sorrow will drop a tear

But I shall have peacefully furled my sail

In mooring sheltered from the storm and gale

And greeted friends who had sailed before

O'er the Unknown Sea

To the Unknown Shore

- by Elizabeth Clark Hardy

sprinkling daisies/ daisy chain of love

September 21, 2013

An email thread on the 19th between family members:

1)Remembering Dad today. His laugh, his dance steps, his love of life, his love of each of us, his passion for teaching and his passion for kids thriving.
Continuing to sprinkle some daisies today by any bits of kindness that show themselves to me today. As simple as a smile with a friend or stranger.
Thank- you Dad.
Love to you all, Ibi

2) Dad 's energy shining down on us all
love to everyone , Victoria  (photo)

3) energy flowing to England ,thoughts with all,  Love/Hugs Kate (on a trip to England and France)

4)Thank you for starting this daisy chain of love.
 Remembering Dad,   Mary and Christian

5)Thinking of all of you on this day. Hugs and blessings.
Love, Rebecca

6)Catching up with this "daisy chain of love" as Mary put it so well. As for the Day of Remembrance itself, for me, and no doubt for a lot of you as well, every day is a day of remembrance. He's always with us.  And as for dates, the ones I like best to remember are his birthday... the day we first met...,  the day we were married,... the day I saw the ad (for that matter!),…. the day we all celebrated his life with that wonderful schooner ride out into the bay on a spanking wind, --things he would have preferred to remember too.

7) So true Grace, I see this day as one of many, on this one he gave me an experience of calm and clarity, so fully engaged in his life, how he would pass and how it was all good. The comng day and the going day and all that lies between.

An earlier vignette

May 14, 2013

I was a counselor at AIC in 1961 (Dick Thompson n.b., you were there that  year), and while the experience shaped me profoundly, setting me on a course that led to progressive education (Nat French's North Shore Country Day), thence Quaker education, thence alternative Quaker schools and Quakerism itself, I want to add a second-hand recollection, from Bob Smith, who was Head of School at Sidwell Friends for several years while I was there. Like Steve, Bob served in the army during WWII, and with Steve at the Battle of the Bulge. Not a experience either of them talked about much. Bob only said that Steve, as his  platoon leader, was an island (there's the image) of calm and reassurance in the midst of terrifying chaos. I can believe it (see an extraordinary made-for-TV series called Band of Brothers to see more -- one episode takes place there), and I wonder about the impact of that experience on Steve. It must have strengthened him, but was there more? Others may have some answer for that...

A donation in memory of Steve

March 31, 2013

Here is the letter I recently received from the Great Pond Mountain Conservation Trust announcing Kitty Darst's donation to their "To the Summit" campaign. The letter is dated March 15,2013:

Dear Mrs. Hinrichs:

It is a pleasure to tell you that Great Pond Mountain Conservation Trust has received a generous gift in memory of J. Stephen Hinrichs from Kitty Greve Darst.  Kitty has chosen to remember your late husband by supporting our exciting campaign, "To the Summit!" This campaign will enable GPMCT to purchase properties that include the summit of Great Pond Mountain, and will allow us to create a fund for future acquisitions and boost overall organizational capacity.

We are honored to receive this gift in memory of Mr. Hinrichs, who knew the area we are working to protect so well.

Yours sincerely,

Marcia G. Sly, Campaign Director

1st page paragrah moved to stories

March 10, 2013

 It is now 2013 and keeping the 1st page updated we have put this part of the message into the stories to keep it for the records. As you know in 2011 the family rented a boat and scattered Steve's ashes in the Penobscot with a wonderful hoorah as described in another story.

From the original 1st Page: We are thinking of how to carry out his wishes some time next summer and one suggestion from Christian (his son) in  a spontaneous moment was "We should have a regatta." There's a thought: a Gathering via floating vessels to see him off.   We'll keep you posted.

Excerpt from letter to family, April 1985

March 7, 2013

       Besides his accomplishments as a headmaster (we went by his old school in Rochester, the Harley School, which he made into a successful enterprise) and as director of NYSAIS (the New York Association of Independent Schools), he built his own house in 1981 and makes furniture in his wood-working shop .  He plays golf and tennis, likes to ski, does Yoga-type exercises every morning, keeps himself very fit, likes to watch sports on TV as I do. He loves to dance--wanted to be a Fred Astaire-type dancer when he was young, danced in musicals at Yale.  He has a wonderful sense of humor, can imitate accents and tell a joke as well as anyone I know.  And above all he is calm and kind, patient and considerate, sweet and affectionate.  He moves and talks slowly,  deliberately, gracefully, and focuses 100% of his energy and attention on whatever he is doing or whatever is happening.  If I didn’t know better I would think he had done years of meditation because of that wonderful peaceful, centered quality he has.  He is optimistic, cheerful, even-tempered. Likes to travel and meet people, is sociable and friendly to everyone he meets.  
       Am I making him sound like a paragon? well, I think he is!
      I know as I write this it may sound too good to be true, but I don’t believe it is, and I wanted you to know something besides the fact that he is 6’2” , has beautiful ears and a  unique nose (“re-arranged” in an accident when he was young!).

The family aboard the schooner

October 19, 2011

There were eleven of us on board the lovely schooner "Heron" out of Rockport Harbor, Maine, that day, Sunday, September 11, 2011.

The Captain and his wife do day-charters out of Rockport in summer and out of St. John,VI, in winter.  They built the boat themselves and have home-schooled their two daughters since they live on the boat year-round. Both the lines and character of the boat (an Alden design) and their story were what drew us to choose this vessel.  I know Steve would have approved!

Present were Victoria and Robert, Kate and Ken, Christian and Mary, Ibi and Booth, Victoria and Robert's son Christopher, Booth's son Patrick, and I.  It was a very special time for all of us.

Around the campfire the night before

October 19, 2011
This was the night before the sail when we shared our memories of Steve around the campfire. I was reading one of the poems I had written to him--"The Rope"  or "Cool Weather Man"  (these are posted under the "Stories" tab along with a description of the following day). 


That Saturday night, September 10, 2011, was a very beautiful clear night on the shores of Penobscot Bay with a nearly full  moon shining on the waters we were facing looking out to North Haven and Vinalhaven.  It couldn't have been a better setting to be together to celebrate Steve's life.

Christian reading the Whitman poem

October 19, 2011

Before dispersing the ashes, Christian read a poem by Walt Whitman called "Out of the Rolling Ocean,the Crowd" which is full of words and phrases so appropriate to the occasion it brought tears to our eyes.  The poem is posted under "Stories" along with the description of that day.


Scattering daisies on the waves

October 19, 2011


After Steve's son Christian dispersed Steve's ashes into the waters of Penobscot Bay on that beautiful September day, September 11,2011, we all tossed daisy blossoms onto the waves .


Daisy with a message

October 19, 2011

Some of the daisies had messages attached to their stems, messages composed by Ibi with lovely words and wishes for Steve from all his friends and admirers, one from all of you who have written things on the website, one from any and all who have thought of him this year, former colleagues, former students, formers campers, in other words all who loved him.  It was very touching and typical of Ibi to think of doing that.  Thank you Ibi! XX G


The sea that day

October 19, 2011

This is the only photo that gives a sense of the speed and vigor of the sail we had!  Believe me, it was splendid and very much like this much of the time. I think Steve would have loved it -- so we reveled in it for him and for the fact that we could give him such a dramatic send-off on a beautiful September day.

After the sail more memories and poems

October 15, 2011

Around the campfire Sunday evening when my sister and brother joined us, we shared more memories and read two more poems, poems we would have read on the schooner had it not been for the 20-knot winds and white-capped waves which made hearing difficult!  

That night Booth read Tennyson's "Crossing the Bar,"  a poem Steve was fond of especially because of the lines "And may there be no sadness of farewell/When I embark." He wanted any celebration for him to be joyful and we tried to make it so. 

And Robert, Victoria's husband, read a beautiful poem he had composed just that morning in tribute to Steve--"For John Stephen 9/11/11".  Robert's poem is posted under the "Stories" tab along with the description of that day.

Letter from Grace about the Celebration at Sea when we scattered Steve's Ashes

September 27, 2011

Dear Friends,

            Just want to let you know that everything went BEAUTIFULLY on the weekend of September 10-11.  Better than I could have dreamed. We were blessed with good weather the whole time, a miracle in itself.  

            The high point for all of us was the spectacular sail we had on Sunday the 11th to scatter Steve’s ashes.   With 18-20 knot winds from the south, Nigel, the Captain, had offered to take us in to Clam Cove , near Rockland, for a quieter setting for our little ceremony, but I had wanted Steve out in the Bay between the golf course he loved and Vinalhaven/North Haven, and the Captain obliged. As we tacked our way against the wind until we were just about opposite the Honeymoon Cottage at Samoset, Robert (a son-in-law) was holding me by the coattails so I wouldn't slide off under the safety lines. The sea was alive, the wind full in the sails, the rail nearly under and now and then we took some spray over the bow.  It was WONDERFUL. Steve would have loved it!

            When it came time for the ceremony as we were heading out towards North Haven for the last time, Christian, Steve's son, read Whitman's poem "Out of the Rolling Ocean the Crowd" in a wonderful clear voice and then, on the leeward side with all of us nearby, with a series of graceful gestures ,dispersed the ashes, and we all tossed daisy blossoms onto the waves (Steve especially loved daisies), some with stems and messages attached (the messages covered wishes to Steve from anyone who had ever written on the website or communicated to any family member or thought about Stephen over the last year.)  As Christian was reading the poem I looked up to see tears, good tears,  in the eyes of the Captain.

            And then as we came about to head home, we brought out the CD player, and starting with the New Orleans Jazz Band playing "When the Saints Go Marching In" (Steve always loved the way they played that so joyfully on the way back from the cemetery and said that's how it should be) we played all his favorite music--Ella Fitzgerald, Glenn Miller, Harry Belafonte--, broke out the wine and toasted Steve.

            The night before, we had gathered around the fire at the Oakland Seashore Cabins where the family was staying and shared some memories and a couple of poems I had written to Steve recently and we did the same on Sunday afternoon and evening when my brother and his wife, and my sister and her husband joined us. We had meant to read one or two more poems on the schooner but since we were rushing along at 7.5 -8 knots (!)--the Captain confirmed this--we saved that for quieter times.  So that night Booth read "Crossing the Bar", a favorite of Steve's, which good friends had also asked us to read, and Victoria's husband Robert read a beautiful poem he had composed just that morning ("For John Stephen-9/11/11").

 It was a full moon night, warm enough to keep us around the campfire late into the evening relishing the day, Stephen, each other and the beauty of life well lived.

With warm wishes to all, Grace


(All poems mentioned above follow this entry)



Out of the Rolling Ocean the Crowd_ read by Christian Hinrichs

September 27, 2011

Out of the rolling ocean the crowd came a drop gently

   to me,

Whispering, I love you, before long I die,

I have travell'd a long way merely to look on you to

   touch you,

For I could not die till I once look'd on you,

For I fear'd I might afterward lose you.


Now we have met, we have look'd, we are safe,

Return in peace to the ocean my love,

I too am much of that ocean, my love, we are not so

   much separated,

Behold the great rondure, the cohesion of all, how perfect!

But as for me, for you, the irresistible sea is to separate us,

As for an hour carrying us diverse, yet cannot carry us

   diverse forever;

Be not impatient — a little space — know you I salute

   the air, the ocean and the land,

Every day at sundown for your dear sake, my love.


by Walt Whitman


The Rope by Grace Hinrichs

September 27, 2011


            The rope you tied to the ring bolt in the granite
            For me to use when I swim--
            I scoffed at it--remember?

            Now that you’re gone
            I use  that rope--
            Just the right length to reach the flat ledge
            Below the slope where I’ve left my towel.

            I grasp the loop and feel your strength
            Pulling me up the rock.

            As I coil  the rope around the bolt above the tideline
            I see the whipcord you used
            To keep the end from fraying--
            An even row of waxed thread wound tightly around
            The three thick strands, ten, twelve, fourteen times--
            And then another to make the loop for my hand--
            All  bound and tied off so perfectly across the warp
            I can’t see how you tucked the ends.

            In Walden, Thoreau writes of a woodcarver
            Who took such pains with his work that
            Time stood still --and the artist never grew old.

            The whipcord you wound with such care
            Will be there
            Long after the three strands have begun to fray
            And I am gone.
                            GH  September 2011

Cool Weather Man by Grace HInrichs

September 27, 2011

                     COOL WEATHER MAN

        You loved cool  days, September your favorite month.
        Sometimes those last two summers
        A cold washcloth on your forehead
        Was the only thing that helped.

        Out by the pond your weather station
        Measured the temperature, humidity, wind speed,
        And when it rained hard the monitor on your desk
        Flashed a message that said, “It’s raining cats and dogs!”

        I found the records you kept, a pile for each year
        Carefully tabled and charted  on your computer
        and filed away day by day.
        Temperature hi/lo, humidity hi/lo/average,
        Wind speed and direction, am, pm
        Fog, haze, sunrise, sunset--twenty-six observations
        Noted each day.

        Often when I was at my desk in the afternoon
        You would cross the room to check the sky from my windows
        You gave each day a number from 1-10--
        Not a subjective rating as I would have done but
        A measure of cloud cover morning and afternoon.

        In the morning I sometimes saw you at the living room window
        Looking out to sea through binoculars.
        “What are you watching?” I would ask.
        “Just checking the wave action,” you would say
        (sea smoke, fog--whatever it was that day)
        “Have to be sure the Vinalhaven ferry is on schedule.” 
        And we would both laugh.

        Remember, cool  weatherman?
                            GH   September 2011

For John Stephen 9/11/11 from Robert Santacroce

September 27, 2011

For John Stephen - 9/11/11

I first met you in your prime,
in full stride and light of foot.
measuring each observation as it was your key to the world.

Your time was measured, as a good craftsman,
shape pencil in hand,
would lean in close and mark precisely the measure required.
This gave you great joy.

You measured the words of others,
listening carefully to the spaces in between with a keen ear,
knowing of the bigger secrets therein.

You measured your words to others,
staying direct and on point,
observing the expression on the faces across from you.
You selected your words with care,
forming a stream of intelligence which would enhance the conversation
and lead it forward.
That was important to you.

You measured the light of day and the darkness of night.
How the winds moved the waters,
how the rain fell to earth;
the dew on the grass.

You measured the sense of feelings,
what it wold take to reach the other,
be they across from you or at great distances.

You measured your quiet thoughts to yourself,
nurturing them with care and respect.

You measured kindness
by not limiting the openness of your heart.

You measured your deeds,
by their worth and ability to serve others.
This too, was very important to you.

You measured the care you offered your family,
what it would take to console and surround them with love.

You measured the length of your journey,
knowing clearly the time it should end.

And today we who love you,
measure the moment we say good-bye.
We measure our words and feelings,
being sure to send the truth in your direction.

We measure the winds and currents of the sea,
as we place your earthy remains upon the gentle waters you so loved.

We are measuring the memories we shared with you,
the days full of joy and learning.

We measure, each in our own way,
the distance we now feel,
the presence of your being,
surrounding us with love.

Smiling and experiencing the happiness of a life so worth its weight in salt.

Steve_Memoir_ from_ Dick_ Thompson

August 9, 2011

    Steve has been rightly praised for hewing to a set of standards of behavior and thought that most of us who knew him have tried to emulate. To what degree we have succeeded is always open to question. One could go on for pages on the subject and never get close to covering it all.
But I want instead to speak of another side of Steve, the side that sought to find fun in so many aspects of life.  If a job wasn’t fun, it wasn’t worth doing, right? Not at all! If a job wasn’t fun, make it so. There was the challenge, there was the art. Start with language. A simple bottle of insect repellant became (thanks to WW II Army official-ese) “Repellant comma insect.” There was “bag comma sleeping,” and the word play spread so that everyone wanted to play. A few rocks shaken in a coffee pot to frighten away nocturnal wildlife? Obviously a “bear machine” or “machine comma bear.”
    Did the contents of the chem-toilets require emptying in a most hands-on fashion? That could happen only on “St. John’s Day,” and it’s said one parent, informed in a camper’s letter of the upcoming “festival,” expressed surprise to find Alamoosook Island given to such religious observance.
    Another element of Steve’s love of fun had to do with style, doing things “the right way.” He never claimed his “style points” represented the only way but at least one way to add a sense of special care and accomplishment to the job at hand. The smaller the campfire, the greater the style. A neat woodpile with each piece sawed to a length and split. And safety too meant style. AIC people chopped and split only on their knees, so the deflected axe head would strike ground before the axeman’s ankle. The fireplace was near the water . . . easier to extinguish, easier for flinging the hot rocks of breakfast into the lake before departure. The slit trench . . . carefully sited for the view and the seat adzed to a silky smoothness. Those fortunate enough to have seen the house Steve built with his own hand can attest to hundreds of examples of style in its siting, plan and construction . . . same principles as the slit trench, just on a grander scale.
    Spread your sleeping bag on the beach? Of course. Just don’t be surprised when that “soft sand” turns to concrete as the night progresses. Partial cure: dig yourself a “hip hole” for relief of pressure points and as a deterrant to sliding down the gentle incline you hadn’t noticed a few hours before. That was style, too. Steve’s contention was that the competent woodsman was comfortable in the woods, at least to the extent possible. Best way to keep a fire going in the rain? Add wood. There was a chuckle behind every order and suggestion and everywhere the opportunity to experiment and to learn. As Alexander Pope put it,
        “Men must be taught as if you taught them not,
           And things unknown propos’d as things forgot.”

    Steve was sometimes devilish in his delights, as when he and his mortar platoon, returned stateside after surviving the Battle of the Bulge, were charged with demonstrating the use of that high-explosive weapon to a number of brass seated on a small grandstand at the mortar range. Though the explosions down-range were loud and clearly destructive, he assured the assembled officers the bombs themselves were quite safe if properly handled, and proceeded to pound in a wooden tent stake using a mortar round as his sledge. His audience soon remembered pressing appointments and made a hasty retreat to the delight of his crew.
    That tough old poet John Dryden translated an ode by the Roman poet Horace that expresses some of what I came to love about Steve as teacher and friend.

            Happy the man, and happy he alone,
            He who can call today his own:
            He  who, secure within, can say,
            "Tomorrow do thy worst, for I have lived  today.

            Be fair or foul, rain or shine,
            The joys I have possessed, in spite of  fate, are mine.
            Not Heaven itself, upon the past has power,
            But what has  been, has been, and I have had my hour."

Dick Thompson
AIC counsellor ’57-’59 (or thereabouts)


A Hot Toddy

February 4, 2011

Spring, 1957, Aspen Co.

Shortly after arriving in Aspen for our ten days of skiing, I came down with a terrible head cold. Being the only senior boy on the trip, I bunked in with Steve. After the first day and many Kleenex, Steve said, "I can cure your cold overnight."

Eager for any relief I replied, "Please, anything is better than this."

"What you need is a hot toddy strong enough to embalm an elephant followed by a hot shower. You'll wake up cured." 

Thanks to the ministrations of the Red Onion bartender. Dr. Hinrich's medications did the trick. 

In the ensuing years, I have advocated this cure and used it many times. No need for Zicam, prescriptions or any of the many over-the-counter remedies. A hot toddy will do it every time. 


Tom Rosaaen

JBS 1957







Steve's reflections on the month of December

December 6, 2010


      December is a time of lowering dark, of sullen sky, of a deepening cold that confirms the inauguration of winter. For most of us it is a time of contention.  Nature no longer embraces us but drives us to shelter, shrieks at us on frigid winds, constrains us with sleet and ice and snow, grants us the warmth of only a short day's sun.  And nature is mirrored in our mood.  The abandon of summer, the exuberance of fall are used up, and in their stead we feel a weariness, suffer a worn spirit.

       But for all the dark, there is unmatched light in December, for now the great winter stars rise in the eastern sky--Orion's circling companions, stars which have guided traveler's through the ages-- Rigel, red Betelgeuse, Alderberan, Procyon, Castor and Pollux, diamond bright Sirius--names to excite wonder,  beacons to point the way, suns to illuminate the spirit.

       For all the gloom there is unmatched joy in December, for December is a time of gathering, a time for reunion of family and friend,  a time to embrace, a time to absolve.

      For all the depression there is unmatched hope in December, for December brings the solstice, the coming of the light, the beginning of the growing day.

          Thus December is light and joy and hope. May they all visit you.


       (Written by Steve for the NYSAIS Newsletter in 1985 and reprinted many times, these words serve now as our Christmas wish for all. Grace, 12/6/10)

River Flow __a poem for Steve___ from Jennifer Malacarne

October 31, 2010

             River Flow


River flow, Wind blow, Sea roll

I see it come , see it go

Earth spins, Day dims, Night begins,

Who stands twice in one wind?

I knew him then, Maine was when,

I was ten, he was Zen.

He gave me courage,

to live a new age

'Till I become the sage,

and watch River flow, Wind blow, Sea roll.


J. Malacarne


October 26, 2010

At the recent Alumni Reunion weekend, alums of The Harley School, led by Head of School, Tim Cottrell,raised their glasses in memory of Steve.

A sketch by Stephen Hinrichs

October 26, 2010

Keely Costello '64 stopped by Harley this morning with this sketch that Stephen Hinrichs put in his yearbook. Stephen knew that Keely had an interest in politics, but did he predict the future?  Well, Keely did not win the National Convention in 2004 (he was beat out by another '64 grad from Phillips Andover named George W. Bush), but he was a three term Irondequoit Town Justice!

The last days, a story of Love.

October 25, 2010

This is a letter I wrote to my Harley classmates and my family said please put it up on the website so here it is with a few additions for AIC and other friends:

    In September my family gathered in Maine for a family reunion. It had been a while since all of us were together just immediate siblings and spouses and kids.
Not a big crew but a crew that really enjoys each other's company. We came together first at my sister's in Boothbay, Maine and prepared to have time with Dad and Grace on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
Dad was up and about on the week-end but on Monday Grace called to say he wasn't feeling well and that they would go check things out in the hospital on Tuesday. He did get into a room  on Tuesday and through a very fast course of events with lots of communication and an amazing sense of.... I don't know what you'd call it.... but it was potent.... (maybe "presence" is the closest word)  Dad took his last breath on Sunday morning.

He was a teacher up to the end. He was clear and got to make all of his own choices about not doing extra procedures.  Once it was determined that the attempts to make things better were not working and that only a type of procedure that could have bad consequences was all there was, Dad chose to go with ease and calmness of just being with his life and imminent death and  not go with the  more than likely scenario of dying from the result of a procedure that would have him be in a hectic scramble and away from family in the moment of death.

Once the decision was made, he had many little moments of clarity with so much being shared,
making it a point to address each person and acknowledge their value and importance in his life. He even made it a point to say to those not there how everywhere he found himself people, students, campers, counselors made his life so fact his very words were "Can't thank you enough for all the love you've given me over the years. I've had an incredible life I couldn't have done it without you".

At one point Dad said to 5 of us in the room, "Have you ever presided over a death before? Because this is how it is done, this is the way it is done right. It is my choice, my decision." Then I said "You are always the teacher."  He said "this is much better than at the window." (Earlier in the week we didn't want to overwhelm him in the hospital room which was a very nice private room that had a huge picture window that looked out over a long lawn and forest, so we came across the lawn and waved and joked around outside his window. Booth (my husband) said "You were acknowledging everyone at the window not missing a single person." Then I said, "Remember at  the very beginning of camp each season we would all stand in a circle and you would introduce all the campers by name and you never missed a single name.. any of the years."  Dad said, "I couldn't miss, if I did I'd have to give everyone a candy bar."

It was maybe 12 hours later he took his last breath.

So much was shared amongst the family as well as with Dad.  It was so amazing that we were all there to experience it together, couldn't have predicted a family reunion, but it made it all that much easier because we all were there.
Grace had seen him several weeks earlier looking very weak and in a moment of seeing that death could actually be close, She said with tears, " I don't want you to go without us talking and really being with each other." So Dad suggested they read the letters they had written to each other as they were getting to know each other.
So they did. They read them out loud to each other and talked about their fortunate lives together.

He knew everyone would be spread out  from St. Louis  where he taught at John Burrough's school to Rochester for Harley School, to Canandaigua where he built his solar home in the 80's to Maine where he lived for all his last years as well as all the summers in Lovell Me  and Bucksport ME for AIC, ...all the people  in so many places who would want to raise a glass in memory and so he asked us to put together a website where people could comment and tell stories share pictures etc.

 So we have....the address is:

People are adding to it all the time. 

Thanks and  love to all of you,

By Osmosis: Kitty Lindsay Hawks

October 25, 2010

Although I did not go to Harley when your father was there, I did go for Nursery School and Kindergarten at that wonderful, old barn of a building.  I had 3 brothers; 2 of whom went to Harley, and another who went to AIC in the summer.  Consequently, I knew of Steve Hinrichs through my parents, brothers, campers and friends, and yet his presence seemed not only important, but an essential ingredient in our lives.  By osmosis, stories, visits to school and AIC his influence, humor and lessons came tumbling into my life via my brothers.
I will never forget visiting AIC many summers, and thinking it represented paradise for a kid.  What an extraordinary man to have made such a contribution to the lives of others.
With warmest greetings to your family,
Kitty Lindsay Hawks

Freedom demands responsibility: Bruce Lindsay

October 25, 2010

Both Donald my Brother and I had been at Harley with your family during your father's Headmastership. What a wonderful time that was and what a great person your father was to head the school at those times.
For Me, your father will always be remembered for drilling into my head that famous statement of his... "Freedom demands responsibility" In a way, I think that was the essence of what a Liberal Arts Education is suppose to be all about. Harley, after all, challenged every student to above all think for themselves... After all, we each have the responsibility to our selves to learn and to go forth with personal responsibility to  do our best in this world. Your Dad inspired many to not only do their personal best, but to pass on some worthwhile opportunity to share with others. In that regard, he was one of the cornerstones of my thought process as an educator and I shall always be grateful to him and to Harley.  Beyond that he was such a kind and compassionate person while still remaining stanchly firm in his core principles, What better example for anyone.
Lots of love to you and your family And peace to all.
R. Bruce Lindsay III

The World it opened up for me: Shelton Lindsay

October 25, 2010

Steve taught me to tie knots
Steve taught me to sail
to canoe
he use to terrify me every 4th of July when he would throw a fire cracker into the lodge's fire place and yell with great gusto "happy 4th of July”
I was a camper at AIC
I will always remember him, my summers there, and the world it opened up for me.
Best Regards
Shelton Lindsay

Further Email:

For several summers my son went to Flying Moose
My wife and I hiked from the Hatchery to Egg Shell Ridge on each visit
Since then my son went to school in Scotland
Flying home we often went right over that section of Maine
Each trek or flight reminded me of the foundation Steve gifted to me
He was and still is part of my life and now those gifts I hope pay forward through my son and his love of the Maine woods.

Messages from members of the Harley School Community

October 21, 2010

I work at the Harley School where Steve Hinrichs was the headmaster from from 1963-1977. I first spoke to Steve back in 2005 when several members of one of our Reunioning classes requested his attendance at Reunion.  He was unable to attend, but was so thankful that the students remembered him so fondly.  Since his passing, I have received several messages from members of the Harley Community who were lucky enough to know Steve.  The following messages have been sent to Steve's family and will appear in Harley's Becoming Magazine in 2011, but I wanted to share them here as well.

Jennifer Hayden Merritt-Hackel '76 writes: I heard about the death of Steve Hinrichs; he was my college advisor in 11th grade and he changed my life for the better--as did Harley! I am currently at Columbia University getting my doctorate in Nursing; I think he would be glad I went for the bachelors, then master degree in Nursing at University of Michigan (I think his daughter went there too) after I graduated from Harley in 1976. He had such a gift as a Headmaster and counselor. I will never forget his ability to expect top performance with total respect and dignity. It brought out the best in all of us.

B.G. Staffan Lundback '66 and Lee Craig Lundback '66 write: He was a great headmaster and a generous person, who made such a difference in our lives and, to be sure, in the lives of many, many others.

Former Head of School (1977-1982), Dexter Lewis writes: What an enormous loss to Harley and all that knew him. I had a rather special situation as I had to follow a legend, but it turned out to be easy, as Steve stayed in the background and never interfered.

We could not have been more different in style and personality. Steve had nurtured that special Harley way after many years at the helm. He was always dressed properly, was mild mannered, very knowledgeable, smart and always a gentleman. I tried to gain some wisdom from Steve's years at the helm and he was always there if I needed him. There were occasions when I am sure Steve would have preferred a different direction or decision, but never once did he intervene or apply pressure. Nonetheless, I was always very aware of Steve's accomplishments and did my best to build upon his dream. 

I am sure that the school will do something special in his memory. Knowing Steve he would want it to be low key... something quiet and meaningful.
Steve Hinrich was a very special person. I will miss him as will so many others who had the privilege of knowing this unusual man.
October 20, 2010

I attended AIC and Harley. The last season that AIC operated I was the youngest camper.  Several years later I came to Harley as an 8th grader. Even at Harley he was always Steve.

Perhaps my youth at the time made the lessons or experiences from camp not seem very meaningful to me. It was a great camp and not being able to go back was disappointing. Now all of the other campers’ comments make me ponder. Somehow there must have been a significant impact in my life because I became quite interested in traditional sailing vessels and spent years sailing in schooners, large square rigged sailing ships, and ultimately as a merchant marine officer. It seemed a natural evolution to learn a little seamanship and some maintenance skills and to build a career from that. In spite of never meeting any certifications at AIC the tolerance and guidance of counselors somehow made rowing, sailing and paddling natural to me. Seafaring has been the most important part of my adult life.

It also seemed natural to learn as much as possible about whatever interests I had. This led me to take a bio-intensive mini farm workshop several years ago. During a break after one of the lectures a participant started asking all about planned communities. John Jeavons told the fellow you need to talk to Don Lindsay because he’s a utopianist. A few questions to the leader of the workshop earlier had pegged me as a utopianist. Perhaps what Steve gave me from AIC and Harley was the appreciation of how beautiful a community or a vocation could become.

One thing for certain is that several times at AIC Steve accused me of heading down a path that would earn me the nickname of "Big Daddy Barnsmell." Even when salt water was the only option, hygiene has been a near freakish obsession of mine for more than 40 years. Makes you wonder. 

A tribute from Trudy Zibit, AIC camper

October 9, 2010

I had a wonderful phone conversation with Trudy two days ago which I'd like to share with all of you. I had called information to get her number to ask her permission to put the note she had recently written to me and to Victoria, Kate, Ibi, and Christian on the website, and we talked for quite awhile about Steve and about AIC.

First here is the note she wrote:

"As an AICer from 1962-64 and former tentmate of Debby's, I have carried deep and everlasting memories of Steve and AIC throughout all the years since those truly special summers.

"Like so many other AICers writing tributes to Steve on the wonderful memorial website that Ibi has created, I want you to know what a huge influence he had on me.  My life was very greatly transformed by Steve and all the experiences at AIC.  I will always cherish my memories of him and the bonds he helped us to create to the island, Alamar (the camp schooner), and of course the friendships made during those amazing 7 weeks filled with glorious adventures and all sorts of incredible activities.

"I can still see him standing before all of us--his admiring charges and I so fondly remember his humor, strength of character, and the innumerable ways he led by example.  I will always be grateful to him for all that he shared and taught me.  He was such a good and remarkable man.  Nothing and no one can replace him, but in my heart and mind he lives on forever.

"I send my love and deepest condolences to each of you.  With the fondest of remembrances, Love, Trudy Zibit

As we talked, Trudy mentioned that for the past 25 years she has kept a picture of Alamar on the wall of her office so that when she hits a bad patch she can look at that picture,  smile, and relax.  She recalled going on a "Delta trip" with Steve, one of those ocean-going expeditions with three canoes lashed together to form a kind of catamaran vessel with a sail, and what an adventure it was (we agreed that it would be a most  unlikely event at a summer camp these days and no doubt it was even then!). "But we had confidence in our leaders and in each other and we learned not to be intimidated about trying new things. Steve let us learn. And he had very high standards. He taught us to be careful and thorough. Everything had to be done right and I've tried to pass that on to my son. I know that my life would have been very different, I would have been different, if I had not had those experiences and learned those lessons."

Trudy's words brought to mind something Hillary Smith had said in her note to me which seemed to epitomize what Trudy and so many others feel:  "Somehow--was it example? expectation? both?-- he brought out the very best in campers and counselors  so that by summer's end we all felt that we were greater than we knew."

What a tribute and what a legacy that is.  It seems Steve always found ways to empower people to be and do the best that they could be and do.  What a gift for the ages that was and is.

Trudy gets the last word:  "Pass it on."

Grace Hinrichs

Steve is at it's core

October 7, 2010

Email from Haydie  AIC


AIC influenced me in so many ways, and, of course, Steve is at it's core.

I felt so free there, free to be me, to experiment with (sailing, canoeing, making my paddle, laughing, playing games) all the things children should be doing, if they're lucky enough.

Getting out of the family structure and into a completely different enviroment was a great confidence builder. I did the advanced canoe test just for the fun of it. I thought it was cool (in more ways than one) to take a canoe out into the middle of the lake with heavy scudding clouds, whitecaps, rain, etc. swamp the foolish thing, and get it back onto shore, empty it out and put it back on the rack. Actually, it was really fun! I was glad I did it. I was even more glad on the Saco trip (three days, two nights, and a third at Steve's house in Lovell). What a surprise it was to me when we got to the one rapids, and the counselors were all scouting out how to do it. Steve pulled the group together and announced that since I was the only camper that summer to have passed the advance, I could take the boat down the falls if I wished. Wow. I was at once very very pleased in a swelled headed way, and also wanted to shrink from the attention, to run and hide. Of course, I did it, what a rush!!! These adventures we all had laid the groundwork for the rest of our lives. Steve made it all so magical. I would hope that if there is a service, or get together, we would have Pete Seixias (sp?) playing taps as we all sit around a dying fire.

Your're right, Steve's death has hit me much harder than I ever thought it would.

Love, Haydie

Steve offered many of us doors

October 7, 2010

Email from Elizabeth (Betsy Nadas) Seamans  AIC

Steve offered many of us doors into a world of wind and water as well as a world of expression and delight that were transformative and sources of lifelong pleasure. How sobering to now experience the time of his passing.

We carry the fruits of his and Nancy's efforts within us--many of us do --but the trees themselves are now gone.

Many thanks to Ibi and her siblings and to Grace who kept him company and cared for him so well.

You were his truest delights, it seems from this distance, and for good reason.

It would be terrific to be together next summer and to sing or read in celebration of his life.

It is a relief to be in contact with other AIC alums right now.

We were very lucky, weren't we?

Tally Ho!



Brought out the best in me : Andy Olman

October 7, 2010

Email from Andy Olman  camper AIC '58 '59, '60

Steve had a great and positive influence on many during my three years at the camp. I was a really insecure kid, and he above all teachers and leaders brought out the best in me; and he inspired me in manyways. I am the lifelong sailor and voyager that I am largely due to his encouragement and disciplined expectations. When I teach rowing today before each sailing class at the Woodenboat School I have to remember not to be as tough and demanding when coaching people about feathering, smartly landing and getting in and out of the boats. But his way was the best.

In high school we had to write an essay about the person whom we considered the most significant or influential person we knew, my essay was about Steve Hinrichs.

Godspeed, Steve, on your final voyage.


October 2, 2010

My friend Steve was a truly special man.  Jeff and I live most of the year in Texas and anxiously awaited our monthly newsletter from Samoset to see what Steve had to say about local restaurants, the happenings in the Village, the weather report, and his view from #39.  Jeff and I would sometimes even argue about which one of us would read it to the other.  We met Steve and Grace sometime after we purchased our unit in 1998.  However, at that point our kids were young and we didn't do a lot of activities with our neighbors because we were here only 6-7 weeks at the beginning of summer.  One February night several years ago, Jeff and I were here for our 2 weeks of 'winter'.  One of those nights we lost power during a driving snow storm.  We made due with a couple of nice Manhattans and some blue cheese and crackers.  The March newsletter had a play-by-play of the storm and additionally that Steve and Grace had vodka cocktails with cheese and crackers.  This prompted me to send a short e-mail to Steve to let him know that we were doing the same with the exception of beverage choice.  He sent a note right back to me that said "You should have called us!".  After that we did things together every summer and winter.  Grace, we love you!  I can't believe that I have to use the past tense and say we loved Steve!

Full Moon Equinox

October 1, 2010

At 3am on September 22nd (actually  being 3 am it was the 23rd, the full Moon and the Equinox) I woke up and saw such a beautiful moon.  It drew me outside to be in the wonderful air and clear skys of Maine. I took my camera with me and with the shutter wide open I wrote with the moon. It is hard to do as the shutter opens and you can no longer see through the lens so you guess at how the light is hitting the "film" surface. Jupiter was near by and made a thinner complimentary line.  Dad loved the sky and stars so here is a tribute in "Moon writting".  I was able to get some recognizable letters. As only one photo can be added to this story I have merged 3 photos one on top of the other. Love you, Dad and Steve.

Calling Mr. Hinrichs "STEVE"

October 1, 2010

I had been a student of Mr. Hinrichs at his school in St. Louis.  He was kind enough to hire me to work at Alamoosook Island Camp; and I knew that before the kids came, I would have to learn to call Mr. Hinrichs "STEVE".  I tried and I tried and it was almost time for the kids to come and I knew I couldn't call Steve "Hey, You" or something; so I went to another counselor who'd also been a student.  He was a year ahead of me at camp.  He said it was the hardest thing I'd ever have to do (he wasn't far wrong) but that I MUST do this!  I realized this was right, so in the shop - where I didn't really need to speak at all, I tried it out.  "Steve."  I could feel myself turning beet-red.  He had to have known and been quite amused, but he let me save face and he never showed a thing.  Never after that did I have a problem with the proper nomenclature, but I was terribly grateful for his thoughtfulness and never forgot it.

Kitty Greve Darst 

Dad's drawing

September 28, 2010

Dad, like his father Louis, had a wonderful stick figure drawing style. It was deceptively simple but evocative. I tried many times to imitate it but have never succeded.  I preserved one example, a birthday card he sent me once. Here is a photo of it. You can click on it here and it will open in the gallery bigger so you can see it better.

Valuable, Capable, Loved

September 28, 2010

When I was young my teacher Prem Rawat said to a room full of students, "You are valuable, You are capable, You are loved." When I heard that I thought to myself, I don't really know this yet, but when I do I think it will be a never fading understanding of wholeness.

I realize now  after reading all of your many wonderful memories and moments with Dad, that Dad knew he was valuable,  knew he was capable and knew he was loved. He knew this and he lived his life seeing that in others. In a natural manner he strove to bring the self recognition of those qualites out in each of us.

Living from this knowing brings oneself all the attibutes humans so very much enjoy (and I think are meant to abide in) kindness, clarity, joy, respect, wonder, curiosity, appreciation, confidence. Over and over Dad infused that in me and now I see he did it for all of us. Thank you Dad.

Crossing the Bar by Alfred Lord Tennyson a favorite of Steve's

September 28, 2010

Sunset and evening star,
And one clear call for me!
And may there be no moaning of the bar,
When I put out to sea,

But such a tide as moving seems asleep,
Too full for sound and foam,
When that which drew from out the boundless deep
Turns again home.

Twilight and evening bell,
And after that the dark!
And may there be no sadness of farewell,
When I embark;

For tho' from out our bourne of Time and Place
The flood may bear me far,
I hope to see my Pilot face to face
When I have crossed the bar.


 Alfred Lord Tennyson

He was truly a wise and compassionate man from Ann Parsons

September 28, 2010

Dear Debbie,

      You're probably getting a slough of letters and cards and so on from lots and lots of folks, folks who have been in the wainscoting for years and haven't bothered to contact you, and are only now coming out of the woodwork to make their presence known and to tell you how your father touched their lives.  If you will permit me, I'd like to do the same.
      I find it interesting that Mr. Hinrichs, yes I'm fifty-seven, and he's still Mr. Hinrichs, has been on my mind for about three weeks. No, I didn't know he was leaving us.  I'm not gifted with second sight even though some idiots figure that since my regular eyes don't work I have been given the gift of prophecy.  No, what brought your dad to mind was a comment made in the D&C by the COO of The Center For Disability Rights.  He said, "We're not responsible for the safety of our consumers."
      As sometimes happens to folks, once I stopped seeing red, I was sitting on a folding chair on the floor of the old, Harley Barn Building, and it was the day before Thanksgiving.  Your dad was standing up in front of the assembly and he was saying, "You can't have freedom without responsibility!"  Clear as a bell those words rang across the intervening forty-five years.  They confirmed my righteous anger against these yahoos who think that independence is something you just put on like some kind of jacket in the morning!
      Then, I happened to be chatting on the phone with Jan Costello, class of 68, and she told me about your dad's passing.  Yes, I probably have the printed announcement here, but trying to find printed material in this house is, um, rather difficult.  Anyhow, her announcement brought to mind many Candelights and many graduations, mine not the least.  Not only those, but a singular incident when your dad when to bat for me against The American Red Cross.   Yep, the American Red Cross, or its representatives decided that even though I had been running the Teen program for kids at Harley for a year, I couldn't go to their Leadership Training Camp which was being held at Bran dice University that summer.  Why?  Because they had no idea how to deal with somebody who was blind.  Oh, Debbie, I remember this so clearly, and it's been forty years ago.  Bobbie Rugg, remember her, was my advisor for this volunteer work I was doing for The Red Cross.  I was passing her little domain in the basement hallway and she called me in to tell me that she'd gotten a call from the lady who ran the program and that I couldn't go.  Needless to say, I was rather upset about it all.  This kind of thing is earth shaking to teens, and especially to those of us who have a keen sense of self worth and confidence.  To have this idiot woman from The Red Cross telling me I couldn't go to the Leadership Training  Week because I was blind, after I'd spent summers at Camp Onanda, Camp Wapanaky in Vermont, and so on and so forth made me angry and feel extremely low.  I had been rejected because I was blind.
      I remember leaving Bobbie Rugg's office and making my way down the hall and around the corner to the stairs by your dad's office.  I must have looked awful!  He happened to be looking out the office door, saw me and called me in.  "What's wrong?"  he asked.
      I explained the whole story, sobbing the while.  "Let me see what I can do, Ann," he told me.  "You go back to class and come see me tomorrow morning."
      I left and returned to class, went home and so on warmed and strengthened by my advocate.  Well, the next day came and I was passing his office again.  It wasn't time for our appointment, but he saw me in the hall and called me in, and he was laughing!  He was chuckling to beat the band!  He was, in fact, laughing so hard he could scarcely tell me the story.
      Seems that he had gotten the name of the Idiot Lady from Bobbie Rugg, and he had called her.  They had quite a conversation apparently, during which I guess that Mr. Hinrichs told the twit that I was perfectly capable of coming to her Leadership Training Camp for teens and that she shouldn't worry about me or my skills at all.  Finally, at the end of the conversation, she said to him, "But I have a question."
      "Yes?" replied your dad.
      "Well, if we have a fire drill, how is she going to find her way down the stairs in the dark?"
      After he delivered this singular twiticism, he started laughing again, harder than ever, and then, I was laughing too.  "Ann," he said. "You don't need to go to this camp.  You don't need to deal with these people at all.  You're already a leader."
      So, I resigned.  I wrote a nice, short resignation, and I left that volunteer position.  This incident was a small thing, something I suppose he may have forgotten over the years, but to me it was a big thing, an enormous thing that somebody other than my parents would fight for me.  So, you can put this into your compendium of stories about your dad and the multitudes of students, teachers and parents he touched over the years.  He was truly a wise and compassionate man, and the world is a smaller place without him in it.  Do take care and be at peace.  May God bless you and all your family during this difficult time.

Ann P.

Your Dad was a powerful influence by Jen (Parry) Malacarne

September 26, 2010

Jen sent this letter to Ibi (Debby) and Ibi wanted to share it.


Your Dad was a powerful influence on me and I'm so glad I knew him all those years in St.Louis.  [Jen's dad and mine taught at John Burroughs at the same time] He helped me to have a positive outlook, with humor toward the negatives. He helped me to find another way when something blocked my plans. One day [at AIC] I remember he made me feel so proud of just washing the dishes (on a Katahdin trip) when he commented to everyone that I had perservered until the sticky bean pan was shiny clean.  We'll all carry his legacy.      Love Jen, Tim and Laura

An Appreciation by Ross Zucker

September 26, 2010
Added by Ross Zucker (AIC)  on 09/22/2010 (re-ordered by Ibi to get above the long poem)
It requires a leap of faith for the young to overcome the marked limits in their capacities. Steve had that faith in spades. It was all that he was about. He devoted his life to putting into effect programs through which the young could prove to themselves that they really did have the strengths which they sorely doubted.  
This faith plus the sublime opportunities he provided gave many a camper that rare chance to rise above their limitations.  Steve’s faith—in the potential of the young and the weak—has little in common with so many of the new faiths and creeds (faiths that busy themselves inspiring violence, anger, ignorance, and hypocracy) that have since come to prevail--to the detriment of the nation.     
Although he inspired gutsiness, it may be worth noting that Steve was so different from those who would lionize his generation as “the greatest generation,” for he had no truck with triumphalism or self-aggrandizement.   And AIC was the antithesis of macho.    
As long as I’m around I’ll be in his debt for the little utopia he made into reality on Alamoosook Island with the aid of a dream team of counselors.

On the 4 of July By Michael Bond

September 26, 2010
On the 4th of July
Added by Michael Bond on 09/22/2010 (re-ordered by Ibi to get it above the long poem)

Every summer on the 4th of July somehow Steve would sneek past a whole lodge full of kids and throw a firecracker into the fireplace. Steve would announce to the camp in his best military voice, "HAPPY 4th OF JULY!"  We would all jump and start to laugh and then the singing would start. I really love that memory.

Yesterday morning while I was waiting for the train downtown I was thinking about that  and wondering how a man the size of Steve could sneek past all of us and throw the firecracker.

Just then, the freight train that was parked on the track next to ours strated with a BANG!!

Everyone on the platform jumped and then started to laugh from the suprise. I started to laugh and the feeling of being in the lodge came back to me for a moment.

I looked up and said, "Thanks Steve." When my wife looked at me and said, "who?" I told her the story. SHe started to laugh too.  So much joy, so much laughter, so many wonderful memories. Thanks Steve, you're the best!

Mike Bond+

September 25, 2010

Steve hired me to chair Harley's English Department in 1966.  I soon learned that he embodied what a headmaster is supposed to be -- his humanity, his caring about kids, his clarity of language as an expression of conviction, and his deep commitment to ithe life of the mind. The relatonship between Steve and the faculty was collegial; you never worked for him, only with him.  He embodied Harley for me and was, in the fullest sense, a "schoolman." 

Did you know that he kept taped to the top of one desk drawer so he would see it every time he opened it, a very small rectangle of yellow legal paper on which he had written in that distinctive printing of his, always in capital letters, "FIRST TEACHER."  It was his own definition of "headmaster."  It's exactly what he was. 

On Friday afternoons, as I'd trudge up the steps to the English Office in the Old Barn to gather my stuff for the weekend, I'd often look past Ruth Ewell's desk into Steve's office.  If the door was open, I'd wander in on my way out.  He was often glad to be interrupted, and we'd talk for 20 minutes or 30 or an hour about anything and everything, often about American literature (my love) and American history (his), but mainly about the future of the school that we and our colleagues were building together.  It's a time and a memory I cherish.

I feel sadder than I can say but I find it hard to grieve for a man who had so full and rich a life, and who so enriched the lives of so many others.  He was one of the great shapers of my life, and I shall always be grateful.

Debbie, you're the one Hinrichs kid I knew personally because I taught you.  When your Dad hired me, I told him I'd stay five years because I couldn't imagine myself not living near New York City.  I stayed 32 years instead.  I didn't keep staying because of him, but it was through him that I learned to love the School.  I send my deepest sympathy and my love.

Michael Lasser

Love, Love, Love a poem by Karen (niece of Grace)

September 22, 2010

Love, Love, Love!      

Love is always everywhere forever! 

Steve, dearest Steve 

filled with Love 

blessing all with warmth



passionate interest in all things     

in all of us  

inspiring us to live fully

exploring our passions   

enveloping us with his attention  

his interest

his encouragement


Love, Love, Love!      

Love is always everywhere forever! 

Gracie graced with Love  

with her own and with Steve’s

Sharing a quarter of a century  

sharing Love  






weaving together memories

growing hearts together


Love, Love, Love!      

Love is always everywhere forever! 

Steve lived his life so beautifully

Steve left his life so gracefully

full of grace

full of Grace       

Surrounded by his beloveds  

saying all that needed saying

hearts to hearts


oh! Love, Love, Love!      

Love is always everywhere forever! 

that which remains  



the imprint now left in all our hearts 

a gift from Steve


Love, Love, Love!      

Love is always everywhere forever! 

the knowledge we were loved


warming us even now like a blanket

enabling us to live on

with fullness and passion      

like his

inspired by him  

to embrace  








Love, Love, Love!      

Love is always everywhere forever! 

in every bird and cricket call   

in every flower 

and ocean wave

in every frolicking seal     

in every star and cloud   

and sun and moon

on Vinalhaven   

in Rockland  




Love, Love, Love!      

Love is always everywhere forever! 

You drank it in fully, Steve


you poured it our freely


fly on now, dear one

in soul form now   

in spirit

unseen to our eyes            

but Seen with our Eye

felt with our heart   

known in our deepest spirit   

only the shell removed

your body of pain and frailty    

no longer holds you back

Fly, dear Steve fly!

soar, like the eagles at Vinalhaven    

free from earthly weight

sending us continual Word  

from that realm 

of infinite freedom and beauty

feed us from there     

in our deepest hearts       

we will be listening

taking YOU into us   

like a candle flame       

glowing in us     

guiding our path

reminding us to live    

as you have lived   


to die as you died         


full of grace

filled with Grace 

we live on          

withYOU in our hearts



Love, Love, Love!       Love is always everywhere forever! 






Words to remember, 9/22/10

September 22, 2010

 I just want to share with all of you two of the many wonderful things that friends have said about Steve when a family member called them with the news two days ago.

From Tom Weigel, former Navy pilot, neighbor and dear friend here in our Samoset Village in Rockport, Maine :  "He cut a wide swath."

From Carl Chase of Bucks Harbor, Maine, counselor at AIC, sailor and musician extraordinaire, long-time admirer and friend:  "He left his mark on the planet."

Steve no doubt would have brushed such tributes off with a laugh knowing him as I do, but I know they're true.

I do look forward so much to reading the messages that I know will be coming in and I told him that before he died and told him that I wished that he could read them too. Fortunately many of you have not waited til now to say how much he meant to you so he already knows.  We just need to be inspired by them again ourselves by way of remembrance.

With love to all,  Grace



So long dear friend

September 22, 2010

This is the message the President of our Samoset Village Homeowners Association (Jeff Davis) sent to all homeowners on Monday, September 20, 2010.

Subject: So long dear friend
I am very sorry to inform you that our good, wise, gentle friend and neighbor Steve Hinrichs passed away yesterday.  His wife Grace and his children were by his side.  Steve’s children, Christian, Victoria, Ibi, and Kate were in-town for a long planned family reunion and they were all able to spend some time over the past week with their father.  They are staying with Grace through this week and the family has asked for a quiet time together to grieve, remember and bask in the warmth of their shared love.
Per Steve’s wishes, there will not be a funeral service at this time.  Instead, we will be invited to share our remembrances of Steve at a web site soon to be announced. What a fitting way for a man of thoughts, words and history to be celebrated by his family, friends and students now scattered around the world. 
Words cannot express either my sadness at this loss, nor the profound blessing I feel to have known Steve.  I hope that our tears, smiles, hugs and remembrances will express what words cannot.  Our thoughts, prayers and sympathy go to the entire Hinrichs family.  We hope you find peace and comfort in a life well lived.
Judy Evans has kindly arranged for flowers to be sent from all us at the village.
We all knew Steve in different ways.  You might have known Steve from the golf course, from his service on the HOA board of directors, as a friend, as a neighbor or as the author of the Samoset Village newsletter.  As Steve always said at the end of that newsletter:  “Remember to be kind to one another.”

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