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Colonel Thomas Edward Hickman, Esq. (77) of Taneytown, MD, passed away on January 27, 2024, at Carroll Hospital Center in Westminster, MD.
Tom was a highly respected attorney and public servant, who dedicated his life to upholding justice at home in Carroll County as State’s Attorney and overseas as an International Prosecutor and expert advisor, trying cases before over 100 judges from 25 countries as an employee of NATO, the United Nations, United States Department of State, and the U.S. military.
Tom is predeceased by his loving wife, Susan M. Hickman, and adoring parents, father Charles E. Hickman and mother Flora E. Hickman. He is survived by his devoted daughter, Jessica L. Lucking and her husband, Grant H. Lucking, as well as his beloved cousins Henrietta G. Mitchell and her husband Dennis E. Mitchell, Kurt Hickman and his wife Delores N. Beaman-Hickman, Kimberly A. Cross and her husband Bradley D. Cross, and their families. He is also survived by his brother-in-law, Douglas J. Wahl, and sister-in-law, Cheryl L. Wahl, his niece Catherine A. Wahl, and nephews Daniel E. Wahl and Andrew T. Wahl, and their families. Tom also considered his neighbors and dear friends, Joseph A. James, Peggy O. James, and their son, Eric B. James, to be cherished family. Lastly, Tom had a beloved dog, Molly, who brought him much joy in his final years.
Raised in the Morrell Park neighborhood of Baltimore City, Tom attended Edmondson High School. He excelled in lacrosse and continued his education at the prestigious Virginia Military Institute. Throughout his lifetime, he was undeniably grateful for his time at Virginia Military Institute, and his fellow “brother rats” became some of his most venerated friends.
Tom went on to earn his law degree from the University of Baltimore and began his legal career. In 1974, he was elected as the State’s Attorney for Carroll County at the young age of 27. He served in this role until 1994, trying over 1,000 cases and earning a reputation as a formidable prosecutor and a tireless advocate for the community.
After leaving office as State’s Attorney, he joined the law firm Hickman, Ulsch, and Holniker, which later became Hickman, Ulsch, McFaul & Wright, P.A. Throughout the years, the firm underwent several name changes, but Hickman’s name remained constant, along with his former Deputy State’s Attorney and friend, Edward Ulsch, Esq.
Tom shared his legal expertise as an adjunct professor of sociology at what is now known as McDaniel College in Westminster. He taught a course on Police, Courts, and Corrections, imparting his knowledge to aspiring criminal justice professionals.
He served as an Army Infantry Officer for 8 years before joining the Air National Guard Judge Advocate program where he served for 22 years, retiring at the rank of Colonel. Over the course of his military career, he was deployed to England, Italy, Germany, and Bosnia.
In 1996, Tom served as a NATO Legal Advisor in the Office of the High Representative in Sarajevo, and in 2001 became a United Nations International Prosecutor in Kosovo where he served for 6 years, achieving 30 convictions including in 3 war crimes trials.
Tom continued his overseas service with the United States Department of State as Senior Justice Advisor in Anti-Corruption to the Attorney General of Afghanistan in Kabul in 2009 where he mentored the prosecutor and Afghanistan Attorney General.
He later served as a Review Panel Member on the Independent Judicial and Prosecutorial Commission of Kosovo which was created by the US and EU to hear appeals by Kosovo justices. He returned to Afghanistan in 2010 to serve as a United Nations Strategic Advisor Prosecutor in Law Enforcement for the High Office of Oversight & Anti-Corruption to the Afghanistan Anti-Corruption Agency where he provided advice, mentoring, and training.
Despite his overseas deployments, Tom continued to practice law in Carroll County until his passing, with an office in Westminster, earning a reputation for helping everyone with whom he crossed paths.
His extensive world travels in the pursuit of justice and service led to a wealth of wonderful stories that he would share generously with colleagues, friends, and family. Tom also enjoyed live music, reading books about history or law, mentoring, art, travel, classic rock, James Bond movies, long drives, Sunday football, good coffee, dining at his favorite local establishments, attending local Carroll County events and VMI alumni gatherings, scuba diving, goose hunting, skeet shooting, and walking his dog, Molly, around his family farm, El Segundo.
Tom's family, friends, colleagues, Carroll County community, and overseas compatriots are mourning the loss of a loving father, passionate advocate, esteemed attorney, proud veteran, and humble public servant.
The family will receive friends on Saturday, February 17, 2024, from 1 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. at Fletcher Funeral & Cremation Services, 254 E. Main St., Westminster.
Funeral services will be held Sunday, February 18, 2024, at 1 p.m. at the funeral home with Rev. Melissa Helfer officiating. Interment will follow at Westminster Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made in his name to The Community Foundation of Carroll County, the Department of Veterans Affairs, or the VMI Alumni Agencies in Thomas E. Hickman’s honor.