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When thinking of the life and legacy of Judge Damon J. Keith Roland Martin calls him “a lion in the legal field.” Yesterday we woke up to the news that Judge Keith passed away at the age of 96.

Spencer Overton served under Judge Keith and he remembers him as a man who didn’t hesitate to step “up to the plate when courage was required.” he stood up to the president, stood up to other judges and fought for what was right even when it wasn’t popular.

Keith was the grandson of slaves and was mopping floors at the local newspaper when he found out he passed the bar. Spencer says he never forgot where he came from and always reached back to help someone else. He hired more clerks of color than any other federal judge and a number of them went on to do great things.

Keith was still hearing cases when he passed away after having a heart attack.


Roland Martin Remembers The Life Of Judge Damon J. Keith  was originally published on