Day 47: Remembering Dick Cottle

24 May

Dr. Richard Cottle came to Ashland from Kansas in the early 1950’s.  He was a lawyer who practiced law for more than forty years.  He was a municipal judge in Ashland as well as a city councilman. He was named Ashland Chamber Man of the Year. And many people know him because he was a member of the Firehouse Five and the Easy Valley Eight.

I first met Dr. Cottle when I took Business Law at Southern Oregon State College. He loved to tell the story of how I would always complain that the law was not fair; and he would reply, it may not be fair, but it’s the law. That was a hard lesson for me.

Over time, Dick Cottle became a friend and mentor to my husband and me.  We got to know his wife and his children and their families; he became a friend to our children as well. We all felt special to be included in his group of family and friends.

Apple Almond Pie – given to Dr. Cottle’s family on the first anniversary of his passing

When I told Dick the lawyer jokes that I knew he never laughed; instead he seemed to shake his head in disbelief.  “How did things come to this?” he seemed to be thinking. Well, I hope he knows that I really was just trying to make him laugh.  I will close with one of those jokes.

A man and his young daughter were walking through a graveyard observing the varied gravestones when they ran across one that read: Here Lies a Lawyer and a Good Man.  The young lady thought a moment and stated: Look Dad, they buried two people in this grave!

Or maybe just one great man. We miss you Doc.

2 Responses to “Day 47: Remembering Dick Cottle”

  1. Donna Wright May 24, 2011 at 2:03 PM #

    That was very thoughtful to take the pie to his family, but then you are such a thoughtful person.

  2. Debbie Pool May 26, 2011 at 1:34 PM #

    Karen, it was so fun to walk the Cottle-Phillips nature trail with you a few days ago and hear stories about how Dr. Cottle would invite you to come up with the kids and play in their pool. I’ve walked the trail quite a bit over the past five years and always enjoy the laughing and splashing sounds coming from the Cottle’s back yard in the summertime.

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