Thomas J. Moyer
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MOYER Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer, 70, passed away on April 2, 2010, following a distinguished career of service to the rule of law and the citizens of Ohio. Born on April 18, 1939, to the late Idamae Hessler and Clarence E. Moyer, Moyer grew up in Sandusky, where he developed a life-long love of sailing. Chief Justice Moyer received his B.A. in Political Science in 1961 and his J.D. in 1964, both from The Ohio State University, where he was a member of the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity and Ohio Staters, Inc. He was elected Chief Justice of the Ohio Supreme Court in 1986, after serving as executive assistant to Ohio Governor James A. Rhodes and as a judge of the Court of Appeals of Franklin County. At the time of his death, he was the longest-serving chief justice in the country, and the third-longest-serving chief justice in Ohio's history. Chief Justice Moyer served as president of the Conference of Chief Justices and the Columbus Bar Association, held various positions in the Ohio State Bar Association, and served as a Chairman of The Board of The Ohio State University Alumni Association. He was also instrumental in the restoration of the Ohio Judicial Center, which now houses the Ohio Supreme Court. In addition to his many professional accomplishments, he was a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, uncle, and friend. He is survived by Mary Francis Moyer, his loving and devoted wife; son, Drew Damon Moyer (Lori); step-daughters, Anne Emens Miller (Rick), Alaine Francis Emens (Jackie Fields), Elizabeth Francis Emens (Noa Ben-Asher); step-son, John David Emens (Jane); grandchildren, Faith Ann Moyer, Carson Miller, Leigh Miller and Ariel Emens-Asher; sisters-in-law, Carol Ziegler Moyer and Elaine Francis Dunn; several nieces, nephews, grandnieces, and grandnephews, and one great-grandnephew. He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother John E. Moyer. Chief Justice Moyer will lie in state at the Ohio Judicial Center, 65 S. Front Street, Columbus, on Friday, April 9, 2010, from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. The Moyer family will receive guests at that time. A funeral service will be held on Saturday, April 10, 2010, at 11 a.m., at First Community Church, 1320 Cambridge Blvd., Columbus, OH, 43212. A public memorial tribute will also be held on Saturday, May 1, details to follow. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to First Community Church (address listed above), or the Ohio Judicial Center Foundation (make checks payable to "Columbus Bar Foundation for the Ohio Judicial Center Foundation") c/o Columbus Bar Foundation, 175 South Third Street, Columbus, OH, 43215. Arrangements by SCHOEDINGER MIDTOWN CHAPEL.

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Published in The Columbus Dispatch from Apr. 7 to Apr. 9, 2010.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
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57 entries
July 13, 2010
Dearest Mary,

I just stumbled across the very sad news of Tom's unexpected passing. He was both a good and a great man. I will never forget the circumstances of our first meeting many years ago.

He was going to Argentina for some kind of bar confrerence and I was going for business related to Argentine participation in a Hungarian World's Fair (which never came to pass). I had been to Argentina twice before, this was his first time. We were accidental seat mates. I had a window seat, and he was on the aisle, which we both had requested.

He asked me for some tourist tips and it turned out that he was actually arriving in Buenos Aires almost three days before the beginning of the meeting and I had a lot of free time as well, so I served as his guide and made sure he saw all the highlights.

From that chance coincidental meeting began a long friendship. We didn't see each other often enough, but I remember once when he came to Chicago we visited with our Mayor and the Prime Minister of New Zealand. Another time you came also.

I'm sorry I never was able to take up his offer of going sailing near Sandusky.

My wife, then an Assistant State's Attorney and now a Judge respected Tom greatly, as did I. Both of us extend our deepest condolences to you and your family on this terrible loss.

Of course he will be succeeded on the bench, but he will never be replaced.

With love,

Judge Joan Powell and her husband Phil Krone, Chicago, Illinois
Philip Krone
April 30, 2010
Dear Mary, we just learned of Tom's death today. We are very sorry for your loss, he was too young and should have enjoyed retirement for many years to come.Please accept our condolences.

Karin and Eckehard Eisermann, from former C-Dock
Karin Eisermann
April 15, 2010
Dearest Mary

I just learned of Tom's death. I am so sorry. My love and prayers go out to you. Call me or send an e-mail when you feel up to it.

Carol Danter
April 14, 2010
Mary, Some of our fondest memories at CIC include you and Tom. Our sincere sympathy. Tom and Dot Bishop
April 13, 2010
My deepest sympathy to you and your family. Justice Moyer will be missed by many, he was a compassionate, caring man and he did so much for Ohio. It pretty much says it all when others are having troubles and a man such as the Chief steps up and takes the time to offer his wisdom and advice. While I was at the Court he wrote me a note before brain surgery and his wisdom and caring helped me through this ordeal. I still have the note he gave me and I will always remember what he did for others and isn't that what we all should be doing, especially today. May you find times of reflection when you will laugh at his antics and remember all the good times. God bless you and your family. Vicki Oatney, Phoenix, AZ
Vicki Oatney
April 12, 2010
Intelligence, integrity, honesty, fidelity, fairness, compassion, character, there are so many words to describe Chief Justice Moyer and the extraordinary effort he put into his position for the good of all Ohioans and the institution he served so well. Those of us privileged to know him, and the many who never got to meet him, have all had our lives made better by the Chief. I would hope that the Supreme Court Building he championed and saw to fruition could bear his name as both a memorial and recognition of his service and an inspiration to all who come after him. All Ohio mourns his loss and is grateful to the family for sharing him with us. God bless you all. Ernest Eynon, Cincinnati.
Ernest Eynon
April 12, 2010
April 10, 2010
Dear Mary:Our prayers are with you and your family.We will miss Tom Sincerely Chuck and carolyn Petree
Charles Petree
April 10, 2010
My condolences to Mrs. Moyer and family.

We met as bar review students always sitting at the same small table in the Neil House basement. Then sharing an office along with Jason Blue working as AGs under Bill Saxbe. The exemplary traits of character and outlook were evident then.

As a member of the Ethics and Discipline committee of the CBA, I heard Justice Moyer's strong remarks at the beginning of each of our yearly seminars on ethics during my 4 years on the committee. His belief in the majesty of the law and the idea that law is first and foremost a profession was central to his life. Only Justice Moyer with his skills learned over the years and personal character could have been able to head up the refurbishing and renovation of the Supreme Court Building. It is testament to the majesty of the law to which he dedicated his life.

Rest in Peace, Justice Tom Moyer, you will never be forgotten and always respected.

Don Ruben
April 9, 2010
Dear Mary and family, I first met our Chief Justice when he was Chairman of the Columbus Council on Alcoholism and learned of his unselfish ways of giving to others and back to society. His many years of public service, his leadership, kind ways and unflinching integrity has inspiried all of us. We are all poorer for his absence. Take care...thoughts and prayers. Tom Conlan Jr and Family
Tom Conlan Jr
April 9, 2010
Dear Mrs. Moyer & Family:
My heart & prayers are with you through this difficult time. I have worked for the Chief in the Law Library for almost 15 years. Never in my life have a met a kinder or more thoughtful human being. I will never forget the Chief and Joe coming to help the Law Library when we were still in the Rhodes Tower. He saved the day by helping us remove all the Rare Books from the Ohio Reserves Room, after a water main burst on the maintainance floor above, flooding this section of the library. He rolled up his sleeves and waded through the almost knee-deep water, along with Joe, and the rest of the Library staff, to help save the entire Rare Books collection!
A great light has gone out of our world, but the heavens will shine all the brighter for his placement there, and when you look at the night sky, I know you will see "his face amid a crowd of stars." (from WB Yeats poem)
Angels embrace you with their wings & bring you Comfort & Peace.
Warmest Blessings!:>)di taveira
diane taveira
April 9, 2010
Thank God for honest men. May God richly bless the Thomas Moyer family.
April 9, 2010
Thank God for honest men. May God richly bless the Thomas Moyer family.
Tommie Taylor
April 9, 2010

To the family of Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer-
I was deeply saddened to hear of his passing on last week. Even though my personal acquaintance with Chief Justice Moyer was minuscule, he set the bar high for what, public character, I expect from a public servant.
In 2004, I formally invited Chief Justice Moyer to be a Mystery Reader for the first graders of Mrs. Terri Byers’ classroom, at Darby Woods Elementary School in the Southwest City School District of Ohio. Not only did he honor the request to read to the students, but he also accepted the the request, by the students, to join in with them to sing and dance the “A-Tooty-Ta”, what a sight that was to behold.
It is because of his kindness that, even though I had moved to Marysville, Ohio by this time, I in return volunteered in his re-election campaign in 2004. It was an additional honor to receive an invitation to his swearing in ceremony- one of which my children will not forget- especially when he took the time during such an important occasion to stand for pictures with them. As a mother of four children, I try to make many opportunities the occasions in life in which to learn from, and it was well worth the drive on that night for that lesson.
It is with hope, that though this may be a sad occasion for your family, you will hold onto the positive way in which: Husband Moyer, Dad Moyer, Grandfather Moyer, or Uncle Moyer has loved you and has been a friend to the state of Ohio. The service that he was so committed to has in many ways aided all the citizens of Ohio. He has left a void in the legal system that, I feel, will be tough to fill.
Thank you for making the sacrifice of time by sharing Chief Justice Moyer with the citizens of the state of Ohio, so that he could help in the Ohio Supreme Court’s interpretation of the state of Ohio’s legal system. May it sooth your hearts to know that the work that he has done will have an everlasting effect on the citizens of Ohio through the legal system that he so enjoyed serving.
In Sincerity,
Bernice Smith
Marysville, Ohio
April 9, 2010
My deepest sympathy to the family of Chief Justice Moyer. I had the pleasure of serving with the Chief Justice for 12 years on the Ohio Criminal Sentencing Commission. As a victim representative, I was so impressed by his sincere concern and desire to meet the needs of both the victims and the criminals while trying to solve the complicated task of justice for all. Ohio has lost an exceptional leader and a very good person. I am truly saddened to learn of his passing and I feel so honored and privileged that I had the opportunity to know him. My thoughts and prayers are with his family.
Sharon Boyer
April 9, 2010
My heart goes out to you at this time. I am truly sorry for your loss. Please accept my deepest sympathies.
Jaye W.
April 8, 2010
Mary, so sorry to hear of the passing of Chief Justice Moyer. Many years ago, I had the distinct pleasure of working with Judge Moyer when he was with the 10th District Court of Appeals. My prayers will be with you and your family. God Bless You. A Grove City resident.
April 8, 2010
My love, prayers and thoughts are with Mary and the family. Chief Justice Moyer was such a gentle man and such a good friend of Judicial Educators.

Franny Maguire Haney
Administrative Office of the Courts
Franny Haney
April 8, 2010
To: The Family of Chief Justice Moyer

I am now living in Florida and am dictating this note from there.

As most of Ohio, I was shocked and saddened to learn of the passing of Chief Justice Tom.

It was a pleasure to have worked with him for most of my active political career.

It seems to me that the tributes given him are not enough for such a good person and public servant.

My heart and prayers reach out to you and to the State of Ohio on the loss of a true gentleman.


Stanley J. Aronoff
Stanley Aronoff
April 8, 2010
My thoughts and prayers are with the entire Moyer family during this time. For the short time I knew Mr. Moyer he had a positive affect on my life. He was an exceptional leader in the community and parent.
Shaun R Gannon
April 8, 2010
My condolences go out to you and your family on the lost of a very good man. I had the pleasure of working with him and he will be missed. My prayers are with you and for you.
Lt. Lee Darden
April 8, 2010
Condolences to the Moyer family. I first met Chief Justice Moyer when he was an assistant to Governor Rhodes. I was impressed with his professionalism and demeanor and he was respected by his peers. Again, my deepest sympathy to his family and friends on their loss.
Carol Pierce Mix
April 8, 2010
As the days and weeks pass, and as you return to life's routine, may you continue to feel comforted by the love and support of family and friends.
Karen Howard
April 7, 2010
I see tears fall down your face

When your thoughts have turned to me.

Just know that I’m in heaven,

With my Lord, who’s set me free.

No pain or sadness do I feel,

For God is by my side.

The beauty here in Heaven

Is now where I reside.

I know it’s hard for you to cope

For you can’t feel my touch.

But every moment, I can see

And love you very much.

When you are at your lowest

And feel you can’t go on,

Look towards the heavens

The light will be turned on.

Talk to me, just like you did

On earth when I was there.

You see, I’m not so far away …

Only as far as a prayer.

And when it’s time for you to join

Me up in Heaven above.

It’s then that you will realize,

The Golden Place of love.

For here there is no sadness,

Just everlasting light.

Someday we will be joined again,

When it’s time to take your flight.


Ruth Ann Mahaffey
Linda Hodge
April 7, 2010
My sympathy is extended to Mrs. Moyer and all the family in this time of sorrow. When I was an educator in the Columbus Public Schools, Thomas Moyer was an exceptionally dedicated and wise member of the Board of Education. His distinguished career as Chief Justice is further evidence of his leadership, judgment, wisdom, and respect for others. Please accept my sincere condolences.
Elaine Leach
April 7, 2010
My dear Mrs. Moyer, Please accept my deepest sympathy on the loss of your distinguished husband, Chief Justice Moyer. When I joined the Conference of Chief Justices in 1998 he went out of his way to make me feel welcome. Throughout my ten year tenure, I always looked to Tom for leadership and sound judgment. As a Kentuckian, I felt a special bond with my colleague accross the river. He was a great gentleman and warm friend. Joseph E. Lambert, Chief Justice (retired) of Kentucky
April 6, 2010
To Chief Justice Moyer's loved ones: May you find comfort not only in fond memories of this wonderful man but also in the certainty that Thomas Moyer left this state, indeed this world, in a better place because of all that he did. I have long looked up to him as a mentor and role model. We are blessed to have had his wisdom, wit and kindness for as long as we did. How I wish that those blessings would have continued much longer. Please accept my heartfelt condolences.
Sandra Anderson
April 6, 2010
Take comfort in knowing that now you have a special guardian angel to watch over you.
April 6, 2010
Mary, The Chief was a great Chief Justice and an even better man. I consider it a true honor to have known him and learned from him. I'm incredibly sorry for your and your family are in the thoughts and prayers of our family.
Ryan Erwin
April 6, 2010
For Thomas...


Do not weep for me when I no longer dwell among the wonders of the earth; for my larger self is free, and my soul rejoices on the other side of pain...on the other side of darkness.

Do not weep for me, for I am a ray of sunshine that touches your skin, a tropical breeze upon your face, the hush of joy within your heart and the innocence of babes in mothers arms.

I am the hope in a darkened night. And, in your hour of need, I will be there to comfort you. I will share your tears, your joys, your fears, your disappointments and your triumphs.

Do not weep for me, for I am cradled
in the arms of God. I walk with the angels, and hear the music beyond the stars.

Do not weep for me, for I am within you;
I am peace, love, I am a soft wind that caresses the flowers. I am the calm that follows a raging storm. I am an autumns leaf that floats among the garden of God, and I am pure white snow that softly falls upon your hand.

Do not weep for me, for I shall never die, as long as you remember me...
with a smile and a sigh.

© Joe Fazio
~ /Joe Fazio,
Beverly Hills, California
April 5, 2010
Dear Mary and Family,
The Moyers of upstate NY wish to extend to you our deepest, heartfelt, sympathies. Thomas was indeed a very fine man and an outstanding American. He will be missed. We will keep all of you close to our hearts and in our prayers. God bless you.
Diane C Spitz and Benjamin D Spitz
Liverpool, NY
Diane C Spitz
April 5, 2010

To the Moyer Family,

Ohio's loss is Heaven's Gain!

April 5, 2010
Mrs. Moyer & Family: My deepest condolences on this great loss. I had the privilege of knowing the Chief Justice and working under his guidance as a lawyer and a Judge. He was and always will be an inspiration to the legal profession and especially to those of us in the Judiciary. He is truly a Judge's Judge, and I know he rests in peace.
Judge Nancy Margaret Russo
April 5, 2010
My deepest sympathy to Mrs.Moyer and family. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Irma Ramey
April 5, 2010
Ohio has suffered immeasurable loss in your passing. Godspeed Chief.
Kari Hertel
April 5, 2010
For Thomas...


Do not weep for me when I no longer dwell among the wonders of the earth; for my larger self is free, and my soul rejoices on the other side of pain...on the other side of darkness.

Do not weep for me, for I am a ray of sunshine that touches your skin, a tropical breeze upon your face, the hush of joy within your heart and the innocence of babes in mothers arms.

I am the hope in a darkened night. And, in your hour of need, I will be there to comfort you. I will share your tears, your joys, your fears, your disappointments and your triumphs.

Do not weep for me, for I am cradled
in the arms of God. I walk with the angels, and hear the music beyond the stars.

Do not weep for me, for I am within you;
I am peace, love, I am a soft wind that caresses the flowers. I am the calm that follows a raging storm. I am an autumns leaf that floats among the garden of God, and I am pure white snow that softly falls upon your hand.

Do not weep for me, for I shall never die, as long as you remember me...
with a smile and a sigh.

© Joe Fazio
~ /Joe Fazio,
Beverly Hills, California
April 5, 2010
Ohio lost a great man who brought honor and dignity to the Ohio Supreme Court.
Those of us who remember the court prior to his steady and calm hand fully appreciate what the accomplished sailor did when he took the helm.
Condolences to the family of Tom Moyer and thank you for his stellar service to the state of Ohio.
Mary Anne Sharkey
April 5, 2010
My deepest sympathies to Mrs. Moyer and the family over their recent loss. Over the years I saw Chief Justice Moyer at a number of State events,OSU events and Judicial Events. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Judge Amy Salerno
April 5, 2010
Dear Family of Thomas Moyer I am so sorry for your lost. Let me share a scripture with you at james 4:8 were it says draw close to god and he will draw close to you.
April 5, 2010
My heartfelt sympathy and prayers for you, Mary, and all the family. We loved and honored both of you as special friends. May God bless you and help you in your time of sorrow.
Ruth Miller
April 5, 2010
May you rest in peace.
Henryk Zaleski
April 5, 2010
We are saddened by your recent lost, but please be comforted by the words of Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus who said, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of tender mercies and the God of all comfort.” (2 Corinthians 1: 3, 4
April 4, 2010
My heart broke a little when I read of the passing of a great man who always will remain in my memory as "Tommy". My very best friend in grade school was going to be a doctor and I was going to be a nurse and we were going to work in the same hospital. It didn`t work out that way for either of us and the state of Ohio is all the better for it. Tom`s legacy is large and well earned but, to me, he`ll always be the boy I played with, got in trouble with, and loved above all others when we were small. I`ll always miss you, Tommy.
Tami Crain
April 4, 2010
To Drew Moyer: I am so sorry to hear of the loss of your father, Justice Moyer. I met him when you and I struck up a close friendship when we both worked for Dublin Village 14 AMC Theatre in 1988/89. Would love to hear from you again, Drew, and I hope you are well. Bright blessings. (e-mail:
Shannon Mayfield-Chapin
April 4, 2010
Mary, We were so sad to hear the news of Toms passing. What a schock! You two were the perfect couple. My Dad loved Tom. He always spoke so highly of him. Our prayers are with you.
Love, Sue and Dick Moore
April 4, 2010
To my dearest family, some things I'd like to say...
but first of all, to let you know, that I arrived okay.
I'm writing this from heaven. Here I dwell with God above.
Here, there's no more tears of sadness; here is just eternal love.

Please do not be unhappy just because I'm out of sight.
Remember that I'm with you every morning, noon and night.
That day I had to leave you when my life on earth was through,
God picked me up and hugged me and He said, "I welcome you."

It's good to have you back again; you were missed while you were gone.
As for your dearest family, they'll be here later on.
I need you here badly; you're part of my plan.
There's so much that we have to do, to help our mortal man.

God gave me a list of things, that he wished for me to do.
And foremost on the list, was to watch and care for you.
And when you lie in bed at night, the day's chores put to flight.
God and I are closest to the middle of the night.

When you think of my life on earth, and all those loving years
because you are only human, they are bound to bring you tears.
But do not be afraid to cry; it does relieve the pain.
Remember there would be no flowers, unless there was some rain.

I wish that I could tell you all that God has planned.
But if I were to tell you, you wouldn't understand.
But one thing is for certain, though my life on earth is o'er.
I'm closer to you now, than I ever was before.

There are many rocky roads ahead of you and many hills to climb;
but together we can do it by taking one day at a time.
It was always my philosophy and I'd like it for you too...
that as you give unto the world, the world will give to you.

If you can help somebody who's in sorrow and pain,
then you can say to God at night......"My day was not in vain."
And now I am contented....that my life has been worthwhile,
knowing as I passed along the way, I made somebody smile.

So if you meet somebody who is sad and feeling low,
just lend a hand to pick him up, as on your way you go.
When you're walking down the street, and you've got me on your mind;
I'm walking in your footsteps only half a step behind.

And when it's time for you to go.... from that body to be free,
remember you're not're coming here to me.

Ruth Ann Mahaffey (author)
©Copyright 1998-2010
Sherry Rockfield
April 4, 2010
Mary, my deepest sympathies. He was a wonderful man. My prayers are with you and the children. Chris Tucker
chris tucker
April 3, 2010
Many years ago, I met Tom Moyer when we both were part of a slate of candidates seeking office in Cap City Young Republican Club. Even then his intelligence and thoughtful consideration of others were very evident. A fine young man. Many more years passed and when next our paths crossed he had by then fulfilled his destiny. Yet this important gentleman remembered my name and seemed the same genuine person I had briefly known so long ago.

My deepest sympathy to his family. Tom Moyer will long be remembered. E. Fahrion - Westerville, Ohio
April 3, 2010
Our thoughts & prayers are with you all at t his time.
"The Neighbors"
Wren & Marcia Mayo
Marcia Mayo
April 3, 2010
Mary the Wilhelm family extends our deepest sympathies. You are Tom were such a perfect match and his life brings many wonderful memories to mind. You, Drew and your family are in our thoughts and prayers.
Kay Wilhelm
April 3, 2010
Tom was a good friend for many years. We had an Eating Group that met once a month for years. One of my best memories was making Ice Cream and not knowing to drain the water. It came out mushy but tasty. Bob & Jeanne Nevel
Bob Nevel
April 3, 2010
Sorry to hear of your loss.May God ,friends (& family ) be now with you during this sadden time of loss. You & the nation will miss Judge Moyer. An Ohio Citizen
April 3, 2010
To the the family of Thomas Moyer - May God give you peace and comfort through his word and the Lord Jesus Christ during this time of sorrow,I know that KThomas will be missed by many.
R Golay
April 3, 2010
As a senior magistrate from Dayton, now retired, I had the honor to know the chief justice. He represented the future of the legal profession and always found time to lend a word to those needing his help. At my retirement I sent him a poem called Justice advising others in the judiciary of the need for a humble spirit and outgoing attitude, he wrote me a kind note in return. We will miss his wonderful spirit,openness and kindness. Blessings to him and his family.Tom Crowl, Port Charlotte,Fl.
thomas crowl
April 3, 2010

April 3, 2010
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
susan wilkinson
April 3, 2010
In all of the tributes that will be forthcoming about dear Tom, I trust his enormous influence nationally and internationally will not be missed. It was my honor to serve on the Board of the ASTAR program, where he led Ohio and other states in programs to teach cutting edge science to judges. That Ohio is the epicenter of judicial-science education is no accident. The Chief visited other countries in support of free and independent judges. Ohio, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Justice, was the training ground for judges from the new country of the Ukraine, and his influence is well remembered there. The Conference of Chief Justice will also miss his constant leadership.

The nation, not just Ohio, has lost a judicial leader who was the epitome of the character and temperament we would like to see in every judge.
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