Former Justice Stephen Grimes of the Supreme Court of Florida died at the age of 93. Since the statehood of Florida, he has been the 72nd judge in Florida. Grimes served as Chief Justice from 1987 to 1997 and from 1994 to 1996.
After a lengthy career as a lawyer with Holland & Knight in Bartow, Fla, Grimes was named by Florida Gov. Bob Martinez. Grimes returned to Holland & Knight to continue to practice law, when he retired from the Supreme Court in 1997.
Shannon Hartsfield, the Executive Partner of the Tallahassee office of Holland & Knight said: “Obviously, it was an important presence in our office. “He’s been an excellent attorney. He always took the time to teach younger attorneys and he certainly was simply someone we were looking at all, and we had the greatest chance of practicing with someone of his quality.”
In the early days of digital life and the internet, Grimes sat on the Florida Supreme Court, allowing the Supreme Court to establish a web site, making Florida one of the first supreme courts in the state to take part online.
“He didn’t really realize what the internet was like so many judges at the time,” Waters added. “And so I came and spoke to him and explained that it was a completely new medium like TV and radio, and that assessment was accepted and he allowed the website to be created. None of this would have been impossible unless he had permitted it. “
He started his judicial career in 1973, when Florida Gov. Reuben Askew appointed him Chief Judge from 1978 to 1980 of the 2nd District Appeal Court in Lakeland.
During World War II, Grimes was eager to serve the United States, but his enrolment day arrived on the same day that Japan surrendered. He then joined the U.S. Naval Reserve and during the Korean War was summoned to service.
He was born in Peoria, Ill. and earned the Bachelor of Law from the University of Florida.
He was still in college and, while he was on leave during the Korean War, Grimes married his woman, Fay Fulghum of Lakeland. They have four gay children, Mary June, Sue, and Sheri, together.