Justice John T. Buckley, 77, died on September 24.
He was born in Utica, New York on February 8, 1936. His father, City Court Judge John T. Buckley, died when John was six months old. His mother, Catherine, then supported the family working as Deputy County Clerk,
He was a graduate of Lourdes and St. Francis de Sales schools in Utica. He graduated from Georgetown University in 1958. He received his law degree from Albany Law School in 1961 and won the Evidence Prize. After graduation from law school, he entered the U.S. Army Reserves and was later honorably discharged as Captain, JAGC.
On July 4, 1973 he married Blanche Casey in Dahlgren Chapel of Georgetown University in Washington, D.C.
He was elected to the New York State Assembly from the 116th District, Oneida County, in 1966. He was elected to a total of three terms and did not seek a fourth, making an unsuccessful bid to win a Republican nomination to Congress.
Upon his election in 1979 as Judge of Oneida County Court, he began his distinguished judicial career. He served on that bench until 1994, when he was elected a Justice of the Supreme Court, 5th Judicial District (Herkimer, Jefferson, Lewis, Oneida, Onondaga and Oswego Counties).
In 1999 Governor George Pataki appointed Justice Buckley an Associate Justice of the Appellate Division, First Department (Manhattan and the Bronx). Four years later, Governor Pataki designated Justice Buckley the Presiding Justice of that Court.
As Oneida County Judge and State Supreme Court Justice, Justice Buckley lectured on Constitutional Law and Criminal Law at Hamilton College. In 2004 he earned a Masters of Laws in the Judicial Process from the University of Virginia School of Law.
He is survived by his wife Blanche Casey Buckley; daughter and son-in-law, Loretta Buckley Malakie and E.J. Malakie; son John (“Jack”) T.C. Buckley; and grandchildren Lucy Buckley-Vickers and Declan Buckley Malakie. He is also survived by a sister, Margaret Buckley.
In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes Memorial Fund, 2 Barton Ave., Utica, NY 13502.
Arrangements are under the direction of Nunn & McGrath Funeral Directors, 470 French Rd., Utica.