Sy and "Lurvey darling"
SY GAER’S funeral will be this Thursday at the Mahi Shine Temple.
Viewing starting at 3:00 PM, with a service from 7:00 PM to 8:00 PM.
FLAGS AT HALF STAFF
Thank you to Judge Farina who did the right thing and ordered the flags at the Justice Building to be flown at half staff for the rest of the week.
All the comments have been wonderful. Here are some of our favourites:
Mr. Sissleman starts things off with a fact we did not know: Sy was injured in combat during the Korean War!:
Sy was the the best. Most don't know he was a wounded combat vet, bayanetted (sic) by the chinese in the Korea. A tough guy w/ always a kind word and a how ya doing kid. He was our Perry Mason & Matlock. We Will miss you greatly Sy,
Bill Matthewman said...
Sy cross-examined me when I was a young Miami cop. I would have rather had root canal. After I left Court humbled (and pissed), the prosecutor told me, don't worry, that's just Sy. Since then, as a defense attorney, we had cases together and I grew to admire him. We became friends, and I'll miss the old guy. If there are trials in Heaven, he'll announce ready upon entering the Pearly Gates.
This anonymous poster speaks for a lot of us, including yours truly:
I'm a better lawyer for having known you, and you didn't even know it.
The reason I became a lawyer was because of Sy. Summer internship from UF in 1983 with Marco Loffredo (another great guy). Saw Sy's show one day and found him everyday that summer and followed him around. He made it look so fun. Many years later I asked him how he did it everyday. He raised his hand slightly above his shoulder, palm to the heavens and said "its all right here, in the hand"
You always expect the legendary to be around forever. I prosecuted cases against Sy, later he appeared before me in court. He never changed, never had a client who wasn't "poor and misunderstood".Most folks didn't know that he was a decorated Marine during the Korean War, or know of his pro bono work for some of the least of our bretheren, or know of his kindness to attorneys just starting private practice. Sy wasn't one to brag.He was truly a good man.Rest in peace, my good friend.Your "sweetheart".Katie Pooler
Here are some snippets collected from some of the comments we received:
His humor, his ability to laugh at himself and the honest appreciation he had for those around him will be missed. Sy,if there is a heaven and you approach the pearly gates, the first words out of G-d's mouth will be "I have this angel who has a problem, can you help him out."
I can safely thank almost every attorney in the building for giving this man the appreciation and respect he deserved in life - here's a case where each of us derived a benefit at no cost, other than stepping back a moment to watch history in the making. Good for you Sy, most people don't succeed without appearing to try too hard, and even fewer gain the praise of competitors while the war is still being waged. You had our gratitude and life, and its safe to say your memory will live on as a kind smile for whenever a hint of your existence passes through the building.
He always brought a smile to my face when he approached the podium in court to talk about his "poor innocent child" of a client. I will also miss how he greeted me with a "how ya doing kid?" every time he saw me.
Always a kind word or a happy greeting. Never an empty glass if Sy was around. A cunning fox in trial, He had incredible passion for this work we do and the passion was real, you cannot fake it, they will know.
The number of lives he impacted can partially be summed up by the fact that children were named after him by the fathers he saved from life in prison for transgressions made attempting to overcome obstacles to success that almost none of us have faced and almost no young prosecutor can fathom which is why so many prosecutors have mourned his passing because he helped teach them compassion for the poor and oppressed and not scorn and he did it through humor
Yes, we all loved Sy and his shtick. But having tried cases against Sy, he was a damn good and tenacious trial attorney. He also knew when his client was getting a good or raw deal and advised accordingly. I was able to resolve a truly tough case due to Sy's honesty and candor both with myself and his client.
To borrow from Kissinger's eulogy of Nelson Rockefeller--To think that Sy Gaer is dead is both shattering and nearly inconceivable. One thought him indestructible. We have lost a giant. Rest in peace--
His black book should be encased in a memorial in the lobby, like the Declaration of Independence.
Informations were "declarations of war," and every client's file was the "tear stained one."
Three weeks ago Sy had been named a “Legal Legend” in the inaugural class of 12 honorees by the 11th Judicial Circuit Historical Society. He was to be presented this honor this fall at a dinner downtown with 11 other "Legends." The committee was made up of civil and criminal practitioners and state and federal judges, all knew or knew of Sy. It was amazing to hear civil lawyers talk about him.
The Herald’s article by Ms. Nesmith is HERE
Please make sure you read all the wonderful comments under the original post about Sy. Every one of them tells a wonderful story. This man was a gem and is really going to be missed. It is often said, but not often true- however in this case it is- the REGJB will just never ever be the same.