Preserving the Past, Informing the Future
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The Honorable Leo Parskey, whose more than four decades of public service included five years as an associate justice of the Supreme Court, died on February 5, 1994, at the age of seventy-eight.
Judge Parskey was born in Hartford on June 22, 1915. He graduated from Harvard College, where he received his A.B. degree in 1937, and the Harvard Law School, where he graduated with a J.D. degree in 1940. He was admitted to the Connecticut bar that same year. He joined the United States Army Air Corps after graduating from law school and earned the rank of captain by the time of his discharge in 1946.
Judge Parskey became active in the American Veterans Committee and involved in Hartford city politics during the late 1940s and the 1950s. He twice was elected to the city council and served as deputy mayor until moving from Hartford to Bloomfield in 1957. He also served as counsel to the state Senate from 1963 to 1965.
Judge Parskey served as a Superior Court judge from 1965 to 1980. During this period, he also was a member of the Appellate Session of the Superior Court (1976-1980), presiding judge of the Appellate Session (1979-1980) and a member of the Judicial Review Council (1979-1980). In 1980, he was nominated by Governor Ella T. Grasso to serve as an associate justice of the Supreme Court. He served in that capacity until he reached the mandatory retirement age of seventy in 1985.
Judge Parskey had a reputation as a tireless conversationalist who used humor in his judicial decisions. His writings from the bench showed uncommon flair. "You don't have to be stodgy or throw prose out the window when writing decisions," he said in a 1980 interview.