Former TEX-ABOTA trial lawyer of the year, James “Blackie” Holmes passed away on Wednesday, October 8, 2014, of heart failure. The Dallas chapter, under the direction of Ben C. Martin’s wise and visionary leadership, created the Blackie Holmes award to be presented to a member of the Dallas Chapter who best exemplifies the mission of ABOTA. We announced the award to Blackie and his wife Judy at an executive committee meeting earlier this year. Blackie was tickled pink.
We intended to present the award to its namesake as the original (and potentially only) recipient at our November judicial dinner, along with a framed copy of a poem authored by our own Tom Melsheimer commemorating the announcement of the award. Now, it will be presented at that event to Judy. Below is the poem:
In the old days, there were trial lawyers who were of great fame
Fierce advocates it seems, but also nick-named
There’s Racehorse, and Red Dog and other names whacky
But none can eclipse the one named Blackie.
His class and dignity are second to none
Back in his day, you could fight hard and have fun
You could have a trial during the day, and a beverage at night
As long as you remained friends, no one cared who was right.
So Blackie this toast is offered to you
A lawyer, role model, and gentleman true
We need more like you, because class never grows old
But when God made you, Blackie, I fear he broke the mold.