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In Memoriam - August "Gus" Eckhardt, 1917 - 2008

The Arizona Law community mourns the passing of Professor Emeritus August Eckhardt, who died in Tucson on April 23, 2008. Professor Eckhardt first came to the College in 1969 as a Visiting Professor from the University of Wisconsin Law School where he had taught for fifteen years, and became a permanent faculty member in 1972. Originally from a small town in Wisconsin, Professor Eckhardt lived for many years in Madison. He received an L.L.B. at George Washington University in Washington, D.C., before World War II. Returning to Madison after the war, he earned his L.L.M. and S.J.D. degrees. A recognized authority in estate planning, he also devoted a great deal of time and effort to Continuing Legal Education, serving as reporter to the American Law Institute-American Bar Association Committee and on the faculty of ALI-ABA courses. He taught property and estate planning courses at the College until his retirement in 1989. In later years, Professor Eckhardt's passion was World Peace Through Law, for which he strived both personally and professionally. He was preceded in death by his wife, Catherine, and is survived by his children and grandchildren.

Professor Charles Ares, who was dean of the College when the Eckhardts became permanent members of the law community, said that "Both the Eckhardts were known for their unfailing senses of humor. Gus in particular was known by his younger colleagues as the "youngest spirit among us." No idea was too novel for him. In his later years he tirelessly promoted the idea of world peace through law and he was greatly disappointed that he couldn't generate among lawyers a groundswell of support. He never stopped trying."

Professor Roger Henderson added this thought: "There are many, many things that could be said about Gus, but one stands out in my mind. His son, James, told me that one of the employees at the hospice asked Gus what type of work he had done during his life and he replied simply that he was a professor at the law college. The employee then asked what he had taught, and Gus responded very simply: "Justice." I think that about sums it up for Gus."

View Professor Eckhardt's obituary in the Arizona Daily Star.


Posted:05/20/2008
Updated: 05/21/2008