Letter: Editorial should have explained how James J. Lawless Park got its name

April 16, 2013 

Judge Jim Lawless, as we lawyers, law enforcement types, and courthouse staff knew him, was a fine public servant, friend and great family man. On June 3, he will be gone 39 years.

It's doubtful many of those who play disc golf at the course in James J. Lawless Park ever heard of him. Naming a park for him was a thoughtful memorial for a man who was doing his public duty when murdered by a pipe bomb in his Franklin County Courthouse chambers in 1974.

The public is often ignorant of why parks are named and other public memorials are erected. Those of us who are still around and knew him are reminded of his qualities each time we drive by the park.

The editorial on April 11 mentioned the park. It seems appropriate that the name of the park be explained for those not around back in the summer of 1974, and the aftermath of the judge's murder. He was a good and gentle man, respected by all who knew and worked with him. I thought some of the younger generation and those newer in the community should know what the name of the park commemorates. He is missed.

JIM RABIDEAU, Pasco

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