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Robert Louis Brosio

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Robert Louis Brosio Obituary
BROSIO, Robert Louis


Robert Louis Brosio, 77, a dedicated husband, father and brother, lover of music, movies and the arts, student of history, sports fan and a long-time federal prosecutor, passed away Friday in Pasadena.

Robert was born in Los Angeles, his parents Frederick Sr. and Natalina having settled there from San Francisco and Italy along with Robert's older brother Fred, Jr. He spent his formative years in the Hancock Park neighborhood and attended Loyola High School. His father was involved in restaurants and nightclubs during Hollywood's golden era, instilling in Robert an appreciation for movies, a story well-told and a life of elegant panache.

After attending Stanford for both undergrad and law school, Robert went on to attend the Army Judge Advocate General's School at the University of Virginia where he met his wife-to-be Anne Landon Harris. They had an immediate connection and were married within a year, remaining together more than 47 years until Anne's passing in February 2009.

They moved from Washington, D.C. to South Pasadena in 1963. There they oversaw construction of the family home where they raised their two children and lived for over forty-five years.

Back in South California, Robert began his career with the Department of Justice when he took a position as an Assistant U.S. Attorney. He was named Chief of the Criminal Division in 1966, a position he held until his retirement in 1994. He would also serve as interim U.S Attorney in 1977 and 1989.

"You can always say you have the best client in the world," he once told the Los Angeles Times of his career as a prosecutor in public service. "The only thing you have to think about on this job – it's sort of a luxury for a lawyer – is what is the right and just thing to do."

His brother Fred Brosio Jr. served a similar long-running tenure as Chief of the Civil Division. Together they were once referred to as "an institution within an institution." Fred passed away in January of this year at age 84.

Robert's more than a quarter-of-a-century tenure in the office had a lasting impact and legacy. He hired hundreds of Assistant U.S. Attorneys, many of whom went on to become judges, elected officials, prominent private practice attorneys and law professors. One of the last cases he supervised before retirement was the successful prosecution of the officers in the Rodney King case.

There is still a conference room in the Los Angeles U.S. Attorney's Office where his portrait hangs that is referred to as the Brosio Room to this day.

Following his retirement, Robert focused on his passion for the arts, music and sports. He was a long-term docent at the Huntington Library and Art Collections. He was active in various classical music groups such as the Pasadena Symphony, the Coleman Chamber Music Association and the Metropolitan Opera Auditions. He also remained a diehard supporter of Stanford sports and deeply committed to the companionship of his pets.

Robert put up a real fight after suffering a massive pulmonary embolism in mid- February. He was lifted by the outpouring of support for his recovery from family, friends, and his colleagues in the legal community. He was a leader through example to the end and will be dearly missed by all.

Robert is survived by his two children, Hilaire Alexander Brosio and Serena Louise Brosio, and their respective others, Szilvia Gogh and Mark Olsen, as well as grandson Enzo Corrado Brosio, dog Bella, cat Bosco V and horse Janie.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Pasadena Humane Society or the Coleman Chamber Music Association.

The services will be held at Holy Family Church in South Pasadena on Friday, April 4th 2014 at 10:00am. Cabot & Sons, Pasadena Directors.
Published in Pasadena Star-News on Apr. 2, 2014
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