Judge honored at portrait unveiling
In an event laughingly described by Gloucester attorney Breck Ingles as “something between a eulogy and a roast,” the legal community from the Middle Peninsula and beyond turned out in large numbers last Thursday afternoon to pay tribute to retired 9th Circuit Court Judge R. Bruce Long.
The ceremony was held to unveil the portrait of the retired judge in the Gloucester courtroom where it will join those of his three most immediate predecessors on the bench: John E. DeHardit, John M. Folkes and William H. Shaw III. All four portraits will hang above the jury box in the courtroom on the third floor of the courthouse.
Long officially stepped down on Jan. 1, marking the end of a 16-year career on the bench. His first 11 years were served in Gloucester General District Court. In 2009 he was elected by the General Assembly to serve in the 9th Judicial Circuit, replacing Shaw, who had retired.
Showing that judges never truly retire, Shaw donned his robes again to preside over last Thursday’s ceremony, which was held with the decorum of a formal court proceeding, albeit filled with both jokes and words of praise for Long.
The courtroom was packed with attorneys, clerks, law enforcement personnel and others who work closely with the courts in the jurisdictions where Long presided.