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Tribute to a Courtroom Legend

“Some people walk the walk,” my wife said to me this morning.

Well, the flags at the federal courthouse in the city of angels flew at half staff on Friday to honor U.S. District Judge Manuel Real, who passed away last week at 95.

Born and raised in Los Angeles, he was the longest-serving active judge in the modern history of the federal courts. He helped create three of California’s four federal districts. He was the heart of the federal court in L.A. And he was an exceptionally good man, husband, father, grandfather, and great-grandfather.

I’m glad I got to say what I wanted to before he passed. He will always be in my heart, and I will miss him.

Here’s a beautiful tribute from a reporter who covered Judge Real for decades.

And here’s another from the chief judge of the court that he loved and served for fifty years: “I am sad beyond words at the death of our beloved friend, colleague, mentor and leader. Judge Real has been the heart and soul of our district since it was formed in 1966, and his passing leaves an unfillable void for us, his family, the legal world and the larger community. His legacy of public service is an inspiration beyond compare.”

Farewell, my friend.

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