Walsh – James R, Esq., 69, of Johnstown, PA, died on December 10, 2022, at Conemaugh Memorial Medical Center, Johnstown, PA from complications of a stroke. Born June 22, 1953, in Williamsport, PA, son of Richard L. and Catherine A. (Gallagher) Walsh. Preceded in death by parents; parents-in-law Bertram and Dorothy Ferner; sister, Patricia A. Koop; and surrogate mother, Matilda C. Labuda. Survived by wife, Judith A. (Ferner); daughters Molly Kaplan (Kevin) of Houston, TX and Christi Walsh (Janna Carr) of Edmond, OK; brothers Thomas J. Walsh (Patricia), Timothy F. Walsh (Lisa), and Edward L. Walsh; grandsons Matt and Jack Kaplan; three step-grandchildren; numerous nieces and nephews, and dear friends Jack and Sue Pfender.
Jim graduated from Bishop McCort High School (1971). He earned a B.S. in political science from the University of Pittsburgh in 1974 and J.D. from Duquense University School of Law in 1978. He was a member of Phi Alpha Delta Professional Law Fraternity and the Duquesne Law Review. He practiced law for 40 years at Spence, Custer, Saylor, Wolfe and Rose where he was a senior partner. He was a member of the Cambria County, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania and American Bar Associations and the National Association of Bankruptcy Trustees. He was admitted to practice law before the PA and U.S. Supreme Courts, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Western and Middle Districts of Pennsylvania and was appointed as a Trustee for the US Bankruptcy Court for the Western District of PA. He served as solicitor to the Conemaugh Memorial Hospital Board of Directors and Ferndale Area School District.
Jim was a world-class Judo player, having a achieved the rank of 2nd degree black belt and narrowly missing a spot on the 1972 Munich Olympic games U.S. Judo team. He was a member of St. Clement Catholic church, BPOE #175, a past president of Sunnehanna Country Club, and a long-time member of Greater Johnstown YMCA where he formerly taught judo and served as a board member and swim official. He loved playing for the Bulls in the annual Turkey Bowl fundraiser supporting Easter Seals.
He married his wife, Judi, on May 17th, 1975. Their hobbies together included attending Pitt football games with friends and relaxing at their beloved second home in Anna Maria, Fl. Jim enjoyed seeing Broadway shows and passed that love to Christi. He was a certified scuba diver, a hobby he shared with Molly. He loved days at the pool, trips to the Jersey shore, and annual trips to Ireland with friends. His favorite activity was spending time in Disney World with his family, especially his grandsons. He was immensely proud of his daughters’ achievements and loved being Pap to Matt and Jack.
He worked and played hard in his life and will be missed by his family and many friends. Friends will be received from 3 to 6 p.m. December 13, 2022 at The Picking-Treece-Bennett Mortuary, Westmont Chapel, 821 Menoher Blvd., Johnstown, PA (masks encouraged, please). Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated December 14, at 10:00 am, St. Clement Catholic Church. In lieu of flowers, please consider a contribution in his name to the Greater Johnstown YMCA, Easter Seals Foundation in Johnstown, or the Pennsylvania Bar Foundation scholarship fund.
Jim’s family would like to extend a sincere thank you to Conemaugh Family Practice, the nurses and staff on 10 Rose and in the palliative care unit, the staff at McCullough Place, and the many home healthcare workers who took part in his care.