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Richard Lee Barton

Male 1941 - 2012


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  • Name  Richard Lee Barton 
    Born  30 Mar 1941  Norfolk, Norfolk, Virginia, USA Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Gender  Male 
    Died  7 Apr 2012  Portland, Multnomah, Oregon, United States Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Person ID  I43034  My Genealogy
    Last Modified  4 Mar 2015 

    Family 1  Donna Pyle 
    Children 
     1. Richard Lee Barton, Jr.
     2. Robert Thomas Barton
    Last Modified  4 Mar 2015 
    Family ID  F12115  Group Sheet

    Family 2  Donna Lea Lounsberry 
    Last Modified  4 Mar 2015 
    Family ID  F11154  Group Sheet

  • Event Map
    Link to Google MapsDied - 7 Apr 2012 - Portland, Multnomah, Oregon, United States Link to Google Earth
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  • Notes 
    • Barton, Richard Lee 71 March 30, 1941 April 07, 2012 Richard Lee "Dick" Barton, a well-known Portland trial lawyer and former deputy district attorney for Multnomah County, died Saturday, April 7, 2012, of cancer at OHSU Hospital. His death came following a four-year struggle against renal cell carcinoma. Dick was born March 30, 1941, to Elvin L. and Pauline Barton in Norfolk, Va. In 1943, the family moved to Portland, where Dick later attended Buckman and Catlin Hills grade schools. He graduated in 1958 from Wilson High School. Dick then attended Willamette University in Salem, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics. He went on to Willamette University College of Law, from which he graduated June 6, 1965, with a J.D. By late September of that year he had gained admission to the Oregon State Bar and been hired by Multnomah County District Attorney George Van Hoomissen as a deputy district attorney. Van Hoomissen said, "Dick Barton was a smart and aggressive prosecutor, but always honest and fair." He recalled that his office had a wealth of bright lawyers during the 1960s, many of them young, adding, "They liked each other, and they had a good time." Van Hoomissen's chief deputy for criminal cases was Des Connall, who was appointed as district attorney in 1970. Connall said of Dick, "I appointed him as chief deputy directly overseeing felony and misdemeanor cases after I was appointed. He was a superb trial lawyer and an excellent manager. He did a fine job for me as chief deputy." Dick built a reputation for winning trials and being a tough negotiator during plea bargaining sessions. Despite having many other talented lawyers around him, he was sufficiently youthful that some of his colleagues referred to him as "the boy wonder." Dick, who had supported Connall's election bid in 1972, left the district attorney's office at the end of that year after Harl Haas won the election. He established a private practice, first with two or three partners, then eventually became a sole practitioner. He did general trial work, including domestic relations and criminal defense cases. Levi Smith, a longtime colleague who occasionally teamed with Dick on criminal defense cases, said, "Dick had a first-rate mind, an ability to analyze cases and blend the facts to form a defense to serve his client." "He was a bulldog," said Kim Lusck, another Portland lawyer, "a very tenacious, thorough and well-respected trial lawyer." Dick was president of the Oregon Trial Lawyers Association in the early 1980s, and served on a number of Oregon State Bar committees. But the committee Dick cared most about, Lusk said, was the State Lawyers Assistance Committee. The committee helps lawyers impaired by alcohol or drugs find a path to recovery, and also seeks to protect the public served by such lawyers. Portland businessman Pat Lockhart, who became acquainted with Dick in 1965, who became acquainted with Dick in 1965, said, "He was just a really good lawyer-a good prosecutor and defense lawyer I've been a client. The main thing to me is how many people he has helped." One person Dick helped was a woman soldier in the U.S. Army who was deployed to Iraq in 2003. She had lost contact with her husband and young son and was unable to get compassionate leave to deal with the situation. Dick, a former Army reservist, learned of the case through the bar's Military Assistance Panel. He helped track down the husband and the boy, and to gain custody rights for the mother. He also handled her divorce case. Dick was one of several Oregon lawyers cited in an Oregon State Bar Bulletin article as examples of lawyers working pro bono (without compensation and for the public good) to help people, thorough the bar panel, with their legal problems. In 2004, Dick retired, then for about two years served as a temporary circuit judge for Washington County. On Aug. 5, 1978, Dick married Donna Lounsberry in Portland. Beginning in the early 1980s, they traveled widely until shortly after he was diagnosed with cancer. Among his favorite sports were Ireland and Italy and the cities of Istanbul and Amsterdam. Besides travel, Dick's interests included history, particularly World War II, and music. Survivors include his wife; two sons from a previous marriage, Richard Lee "Rick" Barton (companion, Candase) and Robert T. Barton (wife, Dannae); brother, Tom Barton; and several cousins. The family suggests remembrances be contributions to the American Cancer Society of the Oregon Humane Society. For more information on the memorial service, go to www.finleysunsethills.com. - See more at: http://obits.oregonlive.com/obituaries/oregon/obituary.aspx?pid=157064961#sthash.VkC4QGzf.dpuf