Shared by Sadie Clement on July 26, 2019
I first met Jim, along with his lovely wife, Robyn, at Reed's and Marissa's wedding. His prestigious reputation as a federal public defender preceded him, so I was very nervous to meet him. Although I was intimidated by him (in the best way possible, like meeting a lawyer celebrity), he was very kind and absolute pleasure to meet. He attended Kelin's and my wedding, and he welcomed me into the family so graciously. He was already pleased that he had yet another lawyer in the family to debate with! 

Jim and I bonded when he helped me with a legal problem members of my extended family were having earlier this year in California. It was related to an area of law that I was unfamiliar with coupled with the fact that it was in federal court, so I would have been lost without his help. Worried about bothering Jim with my legal problem, Alice encouraged me to send him a copy of the Complaint. I am so glad she did because this allowed me to get to know him better and I am so fortunate to have known him. After he read the Complaint, he called me and had a few phone conversations about it.

He and I talked about the unjust system that my aunt and uncle were facing as small business owners, and he gave me much needed advice to pass along to my extended family. He ranted a bit about his distaste for the legal system in California, often making me laugh at his disdain for my home state. I loved how protective he was over me, my aunt, and uncle, calling the Plaintiff in this case "the scammer". This let me know that he considered me a member of the family now, and he was going to protect what's his! It was such a wonderful feeling. 

After we got off the phone, he devoted his valuable time, without even being asked to do so, to help me solve this legal problem for my family. He and I emailed back and forth and I really enjoyed discussing the issue with him as he was so wickedly smart. He emailed me a few times telling me about the research he had done on the issue, even though I knew how busy he was with his own cases and other life's priorities. What I found so hilarious was he was taking the time out to help me tremendously, and many of his emails started off with comments like "I'm not going to be a pest anymore," and ended with "Now I'll leave you alone", or "Sorry, I'll butt out now."  This showed me the true nature of his humble and generous heart. 

The last time I saw Jim was in May of this year at the Bon Voyage (to Amanda moving to Germany), Birthdays (Mary and Bill), and Graduation (Samantha from Colorado State University) celebration in Estes that Alice and Mike arranged. He made it a point to come over to the booth where I was sitting with little Winston (our 13 year old teacup yorkie) to talk to me about how matters had turned out with my family members in the legal problem that he was helping me with. I remained a little attorney "star struck" with him, so I was a little awkward (who knows if he noticed, if he knew why), but gave him a bit of an update. 

When Kelin and I were leaving Estes, we saw Jim going back into the restaurant from the parking lot. We yelled goodbye, and he came over to the car to tell us goodbye. Before he left, we mentioned something about me taking the Colorado Bar on July 30th and July 31st, and he responded, "You know who would be good for you to hire? Payton." He said this with such pride in his eyes. He was so proud of Payton for going to law school and it was so wonderful to see how proud he was of his granddaughter. I hope Payton and I can work together one day in his honor! 

After he passed, I was sitting around with Alice, Pat, Laurie, Lisa, Kelin, Ryan, and Chad and they were all sitting around telling stories about him. When Lisa was asked to describe things he liked to do, without missing a beat, she emphatically said, "argue!" The way she described him in this way, made me feel like he was the Uncle I never had. I feel so lucky to have met him, and am so sad that his great life has been cut short. Based on the great stories I have heard about him, he truly was a "staple of the Barrett family' as Reed so eloquently put it. I think it's fitting, and even poetic, to mention that Jim signed his name in our "guestbook" at the base of the Tree. 

Rest in Peace, Jim. 


Shared by Mary Orton on July 25, 2019
I loved when Jim and Robyn would come to the Stanley.  Sometimes I would be on tour, so they would ask where "Scary Mary" was.  The desk was not allowed to disclose my whereabouts as sometimes it became...well, wierd.  Robyn would wait while Jim hunted me down. Sometimes we would cross paths.  More than once, I ended the tour, only to be told that "Theres some guy looking for you everywhere"  it only happened with Jim........

I miss you, brother.....I'll hunt you down in heaven.  

Your little sister Scary

Share a Story

Illustrate your story with a picture, music or video (optional):