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TCL > August 2011 Issue > In Memoriam

August 2011       Vol. 40, No. 8       Page  128
Notices, Products, and Services

In Memoriam

Lee H. Bartholomew
April 15, 1950–June 30, 2011

Frank (Buddy) Ciancio, Jr.
d. June 15, 2011, age 79

George F. Elsner
May 22, 1924–May 20, 2011

David Getches
d. July 5, 2011, age 68

Ralph B. Harden
November 19, 1924–May 20, 2011

Raphael J. (Ray) Moses III
d. June 8, 2011, age 97

Cecil L. Turner
October 3, 1941–February 26, 2011

Paul G. West
June 21, 1925–February 11, 2011


Ralph B. Harden

Ralph Harden and I first met forty-three years ago when he answered my job inquiry with a letter suggesting we meet for an interview. I knew from that first day that Ralph was very intelligent and knowledgeable, and was a lawyer to be respected. We practiced together for almost four decades. Ralph passed away May 20, 2011.

Ralph was born November 19, 1920 in Omaha, Nebraska. Before becoming a lawyer, Ralph was a flight instructor for the Army Air Corps, was a test pilot during World War II, testing the avionics on B-24s before delivery, and a pilot for United Airlines. Saying that he found flying for the airlines too much like driving a bus, he entered law school.

Ralph graduated cum laude with a BA degree and law degree from the University of Denver. He was licensed to practice law in Colorado in 1948. He started his private practice in Fort Collins in 1948 and quickly established himself as a leading member of the local and state bars. He was president of the Larimer County Bar Association and was a charter member of the Committee on Conduct for the Federal District Court. He served as Larimer County Attorney for thirty-five years, as well as serving as attorney for other public entities. His long tenure as County Attorney speaks to Ralph’s professionalism and tenacity, which took him above the politics of the moment. The Larimer County Bar Association recognized Ralph for his professionalism with an award in 1998.

Ralph was always honest and ethical in his practice. The legacy left to all those who had the privilege of practicing with him was to be a fierce advocate for your client’s cause and always be polite, courteous, honest, and straightforward when dealing with courts, parties, and counsel. Most of all, though, Ralph was a friend and will be remembered with a great deal of respect by those who knew him, worked with him, or opposed him.

—Submitted by George H. Hass


Cecil L. Turner

Cecil Turner of Pueblo died on February 26, 2011 at age 69. Up until his last day, Turner continued to serve Colorado’s legal community as the Assistant District Attorney in Pueblo. Along with his outstanding credentials in the courtroom and his fine reputation among the legal community, Turner also was a great friend to many and an amazing husband and father.

Turner was born on October 3, 1941. He was a graduate of the University of Colorado Law School. After his graduation, he became an integral part of southern Colorado’s legal system, joining the Pueblo District Attorney’s (DA) office, where he quickly advanced. In less than a decade, he rose from department aide to Chief Trial Deputy and eventually became Assistant DA. In 1976, Turner moved to private practice for several years, though he never ceased to offer advice and guidance to the DA’s staff. After several years of running a successful private practice, Turner re-joined the DA’s office in 2005 as the Assistant DA, and worked there for the remainder of his career.

Turner was recognized after his death by Rep. Scott Tipton as one of Colorado’s outstanding attorneys. Rep. Tipton stated that Turner’s career was exemplified by his outstanding record in the courtroom, and that he was a tremendous legal resource and his experience will be difficult to replace. Many members of the legal community turned to Turner as both a teacher and resource.

Attorneys of Turner’s caliber are rare, and his exemplary career is one to be admired.

Submitted by Christopher Turner

The In Memoriam section lists the name, date of birth where available, and date of death of deceased attorneys, JDs, judges, and legal professionals. Reader-submitted tributes of deceased attorneys and legal professionals, including those listed above, are welcomed. Tributes should provide information about the deceased’s legal career. Photographs are encouraged. Tributes will be published as space is available and as the publication schedule allows. Send tributes and notices about recently deceased attorneys to Tracy Rackauskas at

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