Remembering the life and legacy of former Senate President "Doc" Hines

Former Senate President "Doc" Hines at the legislature in 2004
Former Senate President "Doc" Hines at the legislature in 2004(KALB)
Published: Jun. 19, 2019 at 4:50 PM CDT
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Former state Senate President from Avoyelles Parish, Dr. Donald Hines, known as "Doc", has passed away at the age of 85.

A life of service and compassion, that's how people who knew "Doc" Hines best describe him. Especially those who served with him.

"Don just had an affable personality that endeared everybody that he came in contact with," said Joe McPherson, a former state senator who served with Hines.

Hines carried that over into his tenure in politics. Serving as a state senator from 1993 to 2008. Capping off his last four years as Senate President under then Gov. Kathleen Blanco.

"He loved America, he loved Louisiana, he was one that served tirelessly to benefit others," said Sen. Gerald Long, Dist. 31.

He carried his passion and life work as a physician to the legislature. Focusing on healthcare, especially childhood healthcare.

"A Louisiana where any little boy or any little girl who is sick will have access to quality healthcare," said Dr. Hines, during his swearing-in as Senate President in 2004.

"I think if you want to look at childhood development from a state of Louisiana perspective, Hines was at the very source of that," said Sen. Long.

"It was during Katrina and Rita and a lot of the people remember that a lot of the healthcare services were disrupted in the state, and his knowledge of healthcare to help put that infrastructure back in place and delivery system back in place was especially important," said McPherson.

Hines also had a passion for his hometown of Bunkie and the Avoyelles Parish area, making an impact on the lives of many as a doctor and politician.

"What you are losing at the end of the day is one that comes along once in a lifetime,” said Sen. Long. “He would be to me a giant, an icon if you will of public service."

“Doc” Hines is survived by his wife Jackie and six children.

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