Arthur Roderick Carmody, Jr., 93, a prominent Shreveport lawyer, passed away on April 4, 2021 of natural causes.
He was born on February 19, 1928, in Shreveport to Arthur Roderick Carmody and Caroline Gaughan Carmody. Graduating high school from New Mexico Military Institute in 1944, he received a Bachelor of Science degree from Fordham University in 1949. He continued his studies at Louisiana State University Law School receiving his law degree in 1952. He practiced law with the firm of Wilkinson, Carmody, and Gilliam and its predecessors, Shreveport’s oldest law firm formed in 1895, where he started as a summer runner.
Mr. Carmody served as president of the Shreveport Bar Association and was a member of the governor's ad hoc committee to write the draft of the laws regulating lignite mining and development in Louisiana, and also a member of the special committee appointed by the Louisiana Supreme Court in 1968 to review issues of lawyer and judicial conduct. In 1978, he was inducted in New York City into the prestigious American College of Trial Lawyers. He was a founding member of the local American Inn of Court and the Red Mass of Shreveport.
During his career, Art Carmody represented all the railroads which served Shreveport, including the KCS, L&A, UP, T&P, Missouri Pacific, Illinois Central, and Mid-South. He tried over 600 railroad cases throughout Louisiana and the surrounding area. He also served as a member of the Louisiana Railroad Association and its executive committee from 1970 to 2002.
Art Carmody was a successful trial lawyer for over fifty years in state and federal courts in the Ark-La-Tex representing such clients as SWEPCO, Sears, Roebuck & Co., Schumpert Medical Center, local movie theatres, schools, and even a professional wrestler.
He often wrote articles and letters for numerous publications, including The Shreveport Times. He was a regular contributor to the local law magazine on topics of Shreveport and Louisiana legal history.
Mr. Carmody was actively involved in preserving Catholic secondary education in the Shreveport area. In 1969, the Jesuit Order that had owned and operated St. John's High School since 1901 announced that it would be closed in the following year due to financial concerns and manpower shortages. Mr. Carmody, who already represented the high school, led a small group of Catholic men who negotiated and worked with the Jesuit Order to turn the school over to a lay board of trustees which assumed all of the obligations of the existing school. He devised and negotiated with the Jesuits what is called the "Shreveport Plan" which "saved the school from closure", as attested in the Alumni Achievement Award by Fordham University given in 1995. Mr. Carmody was the second chairman of the board of trustees and served as a board member for many years. The school is now named Loyola College Prep where he was inducted into the Hall of Honor.
Mr. Carmody was devoted to the Catholic faith and a member of the Cathedral of St. John Berchmans in Shreveport. In 1995, he was inducted as a member of the Sovereign Military Order of the Knights of Malta (Federal Association), St. Patrick's Cathedral in Washington, D.C.
Always involved in athletic affairs, Art was an officer and director of the Shreveport Braves Baseball Club (Texas League) in the late 1950s, a general partner in the Shreveport Steamer organization in the World Football League in the 1970s and president of the Touchdown Club of Shreveport. Art for numerous years coached many a youth baseball team. He perennially won the Petroleum Club gin rummy tournament.
Mr. Carmody was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Lansdale Carmody, Renee Aubry Carmody Vandiver (the mother of his children), his parents, and his brothers, Michael Barry Carmody, and Thomas Gaughan Carmody. He is survived by his children Helen Bragg Carmody Stroud (Dan)of Galveston, Renee Carmody Mathews (Walker) of Nashville, Arthur Roderick Carmody, III (Jacquie) of Shreveport, Patrick Gerard Carmody of New York City, Timothy Aubry Carmody (Jess) of Seattle, Mary Carmody Hart (Darren) of Dallas, Virginia Carmody Gunn (Gary) of Houston, and Joseph Barry Carmody of College Station; also, his sister Josephine Gaughan Carmody of Shreveport, as well as twenty-three grandchildren.
His grandsons will be pallbearers for the funeral service.
A special thanks to his caregivers these last few years - Nicole Hamilton, Taffney Ming, and Yolanda Gueory.
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