HONORABLE JAMES H. PUGH
HONORABLE RALPH G. SHURE
HONORABLE JOHN P. MOORE
HONORABLE PLUMMER M. SHEARIN
HONORABLE IRVING A. LEVINE
HONORABLE H. RALPH MILLER
CHARLES W. WOODWARD, ESQ., President
Montgomery County Bar Association
ANDREW W. STARRATT, JR., ESQ., Chairman
P R O C E E D I N G S
JUDGE PUGH: This Court convenes at this hour as a Memorial for those members of the Bar who died during the past year.
The Court will recognize the members of the Bar Association.
Mr. Charles W. Woodward.
MR. WOODWARD: Your Honors please, it is in the highest tradition of the Bench and Bar that we suspend our usual activities this afternoon to take time to pay our respect to those members who have passed away during the past year.
The members of our Bar Association who have passed away during the past year are Mr. Edwin L. Bright and Colonel George A. Moore.
I would like to now present to Your Honors the Chairman of our Memorial Committee of the Montgomery County Bar Association, Mr. Andrew W. Starratt, Jr.
MR. STARRATT: With Your Honors’ permission I first of all, on behalf of the Montgomery County Bar Association, move that these proceedings be spread upon the Minutes of the Court. I so move.
JUDGE PUGH: The motion is granted.
MR. STARRATT: And next, Your Honors, on behalf of the Bar Association I would like Your Honors to recognize Mr. Louis Cohen who will speak on behalf of our departed colleague, Edwin L. Bright.
MR. COHEN: Honorable Chief Judge Pugh, Honorable Members of the Judiciary, Members of the Bar, Mrs. Bright and friends. We gather here this afternoon, as is our custom, to pay our respects to the memory of the members of the Bar of our legal fraternity who have recently passed on to a higher tribunal.
We pause before our Divine Creator. It is the proper study of we, the living, to recall the memory of those we loved and shared life and worked with as contemporaries.
To do so gives us comfort and reminds us that we, the living, remember the past, mindful of those who have enriched our lives.
It was my singular privilege to have associated and worked with Edwin Leroy Bright, a member of our legal fraternity who suddenly left our midst on February 10, 1971.
Ed was truly a man who lifted himself up by his own bootstraps.
He was born on October 30, 1904 in Northeast Washington under humble circumstances.
As a boy he self energized himself. At an early age he was able to secure employment as a Page Boy in the House of Representatives and subsequently in the United States Senate. Now, this experience enriched him with knowledge of the functions of our government. He became endeared to Congressmen and Senators alike for the many confidential errands he carried for them. He on one occasion related to me of the time when the then Senator from North Carolina invited and took him along to see President Woodrow Wilson at the White House and the warmth with which he as a young boy was greeted by the President.
His education at the Emerson Institute qualified him for admission to National University School of Economics and Government and its School of Law from which he attained his law degree. During his law school years he was employed as an auditor in the District Government.
He was admitted to the U. S. District Court for the District of Columbia and the U. S. Court of Appeals in 1944, and to the U. S. Supreme Court in 1947 and the Maryland Court of Appeals in 1952.
In 1949, while employed in the Veteran’s Administration as Chairman of the Disability Rating Board, he received a citation from the Disabled American Veterans for his outstanding service to our veterans.
Ed was always interested in and worked for good government. From 1956 to 1958 he served on the Montgomery County Personnel Board, and from 1958 to 1962 he served on the Montgomery County Board of Appeals.
He was a member of the Montgomery County, Maryland, State and D. C. Bar Associations. He was a past master of Brightwood Masonic Lodge, Past Patron of the Silver Spring Chaper of Eastern Star, Almas Temple and Scottish Rite and the charter secretary of the Optimist Club of Bethesda.
But most of all he was a devoted son, son-in-law, husband, father, grandfather and friend. For those who knew him, his memory shall always be cherished. The Montgomery County Bar Association and his contemporaries of our legal fraternity shall ever remember the indelible mark made by him upon our memory by his inspiring soul, for his loss shall be shared by all knew him.
THE COURT: Any other further remarks?
Judge Shure will respond on behalf of the Court.
JUDGE SHURE: I first knew Ed when he left government service and came to practice law in the County here. Then he had a small office across the street and now they call it the Professional Building.
I worked with him before I went to the Bench on several occasions and I came to know him quite well. He was most kind to me when I was running for office. I have many fine memories of our association during those sometimes difficult times. He has appeared before me on several occasions since I have been on the Bench and Ed Bright was always a good advocate. He was always well prepared, always represented himself well and gave credit to our profession. I will not repeat what Mr. Cohen has said but I do emphasize with a degree of personal knowledge the distinguished service to the government, both Federal and Montgomery County.
Ed was also a religious man and on his success he also had tragedy in his life time, but he took it all extremely well.
To his many friends and to his devoted family he will be greatly missed and the Court through me, speaking for all members of the Court, are pleased to recognize his contribution to the State of Maryland, to his beloved country, to Montgomery County and to the legal profession of which he was so justly proud.
JUDGE PUGH: Any further remarks?
I wish to tell the members of the family of our deceased brother, Ed Bright, that our administrative judge, Judge Mathias, is away and Judge Moorman was required to attend a hospital for some physical examination required by his former service in the Navy and that is the reason why neither of those judges are here present among us today.
Memorial services go far back in this County and the purpose of these Memorial Services is to record in the Book that is called Memorials for Deceased Members of the Bar.
We have thse proceedings once a year. I just happened to read some of the Memorials of the past deceased lawyers and remarks of some of the judges with regard to the deceased members of the Bar during that time.
Some of those remarks spread upon the record of this Court the deeds, noble, legal and otherwise, of its deceased members.
(The Court then proceeded with another Memorial Service and adjourned).