Long time Old Town Alexandria resident, political and neighborhood activist, and accomplished tennis player, Harriet Hines Carlin, died June 23 at Inova Alexandria Hospital from complications of heart disease. She was 75.
A native of Louisville, Ky., she was born Feb. 22, 1932, the daughter of the late Col. Owen Murrey Hines, USMC (Ret) and Harriet Weldon Hines. She was also the granddaughter of prominent early 20th Century Kentucky industrialist, George Childs Weldon Sr., and his wife Harriet Owen Weldon.
Having spent her early years in Louisville, where she attended The Collegiate School, Mrs. Carlin first came to the Washington area following World War II when her father was assigned to Marine Corps Headquarters. They resided in Northwest Washington, D.C. She graduated from Immaculata Girls High School and attended American University.
With the nation's entrance into World War II, the family relocated to the West Coast when her father was assigned to the El Toro Marine Corps Air Station, El Toro, Calif. It was during those early teenage years that she became interested in tennis.
Her natural talent for the sport caught the eye of the 1930's legendary American grand slam tennis champion, Don Budge, and she became his pupil at the famed LaJolla Beach and Tennis Club. Under his tutorage, Mrs. Carlin became a nationally ranked junior player and member of the United States Junior Whitman Cup Team. She was the Junior Middle Atlantic Tennis Champion in 1945/46.
It was her life-long interest in tennis that lead her to meet her husband, Vincent A. Carlin Jr., of Alexandria, while playing on the courts at Montross Park in Georgetown. Following their 1952 marriage they resided on South Lee and Green streets in Old Town Alexandria.
Their two sons, Vincent A. "Chip" Carlin III, and Mark Weldon Carlin attended St. Mary's Elementary School and graduated from T.C. Williams High School. Chip Carlin, a graduate of the University of Kentucky, now heads his own firm, Carlin Architecture and Planning, in Alexandria. Mark Carlin, who acquired his mother's love and proficiency for tennis, served as the tennis pro at the Charles E. Smith Companies, Crystal Gateway Racquet Club in Arlington. He died in 2003.
Mrs. Carlin, who resided on Church Street for the past 48 years, following her divorce in the early 1960s, became a civic and political activist and organizer in her "southside." neighborhood. She was famous for introducing new neighborhood arrivals, whom she met while walking her dogs, to existing neighbors thereby encouraging and promoting neighborhood cohesiveness and goodwill which evolved into her community legacy.
Mrs. Carlin's civic activism extended into both the local political arena, where she served as a volunteer precinct block captain for the Alexandria Democratic Committee, and as a volunteer for City government. In the latter capacity she edited the annual activities brochure of the Alexandria Department of Recreation, Parks & Cultural Affairs.
Her "get out the vote" efforts benefited the campaigns of U.S. Rep. James P. Moran, in both his city council and mayoral campaigns; State Delegate Brian Moran and former State Delegate Marion Van Landingham; former Alexandria Vice Mayor Andrew Macdonald; and former Alexandria Sheriff James Dunning.
Professionally, Mrs. Carlin was a federal government career employee. She served as an editor at the Federal Trade Commission and The Federal Register prior to her retirement in 1985. Her avocation encompassed a life-long fondness for people, tennis, cooking, animals, languages, the written word, gardening, nature, and the environment in general.
In addition to her son Chip, Mrs. Carlin is survived by her sister, Kate Points of Louisville, Ky.; a grandson, Jack Harrell of Fredericksburg; and an array of loving nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.
A memorial service will be held in her honor on Sunday, Oct. 14, 2007, at Mount Vernon Unitarian Church, 1909 Windmill Lane, Alexandria, VA 22307, commencing at 4 p.m. A reception will follow the service. For those wishing to make a memorial gift, donations may be made in her name to the Animal Welfare League of Alexandria, 4101 Eisenhower Ave., Alexandria, VA 22304.