When news broke that 92-year-old "Bob" Auerbach had passed away, many Greenbelters took to Patch and social media to share memories of the man they said was known for his peaceful demeanor and affirmative action.
—including civil rights, non-violence and the environment, the Maryland Green Party said in a statement.
Auerbach moved to Greenbelt in 1960 and since then had run for office four times as a Green Party candidate, first for Congress in 2002, The Gazette reported. He ran again in 2004 and most recently in 2012 for the US House of Representatives in the Fifth Congressional District, which covers Greenbelt and Bowie. He also won the Green Party nomination for the comptroller of Maryland in 2006, The Gazette reported.
According to his campaign website, he was anti-war, wanted funding for programs that helped fellow citizens like education, housing and health care and sustainable energy.
But "Bob"—how most Greenbelters and others recognized him—was not only known for his political aspirations.
The man was tenacious and always looked for the positive. Even on a cold Election Day this November he focused on the things he could do with his life.
He had 12 operations on his left knee and was 95 percent blind in his right eye. He had hearing aids in both ears and a metal plate in his left hip, but he walked to the polls to hand out information about his campaign to voters. He was just glad he had more support this year.
"Bob was an activist for our cause right up until the very end, having just completed a run for the 5th Congressional district," current Maryland Green Party co-chair Tim Willard said in a release. "He will be greatly missed."
Auerbach received more than 4,660 votes (1.5 percent of the vote) in November, Patch reported.
"Truly, a voice for alternative action and always thought provoking, he will be greatly missed," Patch reader Earl Kepler said. "A bright light has been extinguished in our community."
According to Greenbelt Police, Auerbach was the victim of a hit-and-run near Hanover Parkway on the evening of Dec. 12. The suspect's vehicle was described as a silver Mercedes.
Police spokeswoman Kelly Lawson said both the car and driver have been identified. However, Lawson said Friday police will not release the name of the driver until the case is screened by the State's Attorney's Office.
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