Leslie Richard Weatherhead, dearly loved husband, father, friend, and Spokane attorney died of cancer on May 9, 2016 at Hospice House with his wife and family by his side.
He was 59.
Diagnosed last December, Les fought the disease with the same tireless conviction he held for his clients, and with the abundant love and support of his family, friends, doctors, and medical staff.
Les was a joy-filled man and a captivating storyteller whose optimism was boundless.
His life was driven by love, gratitude, and an appreciation for the curiosities and wonders of the world.
Les adored his family above all.
Over a family dinner, he said he was among the top 1% of happiest human beings in the history of humankind.
Listing off his great fortunes: having his basic needs consistently met, a wonderful family all in good health, surrounded by love, fulfilled in his work, no famine, no disease; the list snow-balled: Bertie Wooster, A Prairie Home Companion, a college education, photography, bird-watching, central air conditioning, sailing, water and jet skiing on Priest Lake, the Hammond B3 Organ, electric lights, Rumpole, indoor plumbing, and the almighty Oregon Ducks!
His spiritual fortune was the product of his deep appreciation in all things, his consistent effort to be the best version of himself, and his unconditional loyalty to those whom he loved.
Les often told his children that he “never worked a day in his life” because of his deep passion for his profession.
He was a member of the bar associations of Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Hawaii.
A brilliant lawyer, he was recognized as one of the Best Lawyers in America in the practice of commercial litigation.
Les was an adjunct professor at Gonzaga University School of Law for many years, a member of the Washington Appellate Lawyers Association, board member of the Federal Public Defenders group in Spokane, member and former Chair of the Ninth Circuit Advisory Board, and a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers.
He cared about the community in which he lived, volunteering in numerous non-profit civic organizations, his children’s school theatre, sports, and music groups, and most recently as member of the board of the Friends of Mt.
Spokane State Park.
He was not shy to voice what he felt was important for the greater good.
He wrote his legislators frequently, expressed his opinions eloquently, and was so well read that one could rely on him to bring a critical perspective into any legal, moral, or ethical issue.
For the last three years, Les was a partner at Lee & Hayes, an intellectual property law firm.
For 30 years prior, he was a partner at Witherspoon Kelley Davenport & Toole.
His practice concentrated on litigation of complex commercial and regulatory disputes, white-collar defense, and pro-bono work (a right to representation he felt every person was entitled).
He enjoyed arguing in front of the Federal Courts in various parts of the country and was incredibly honored to have recently appeared before the United States Supreme Court.
“If you had painted rocks,” he once said, “One’s red and one’s blue, and you slid them across each other, the red stone will have a blue streak and the blue stone will have a red streak.
Throughout your life, you will find people who walk in and leave their streak.
It’s important to remember the marks people have made on your life.
Never forget that.”
Indeed, Les touched many lives, too, and left his mark on them all.
Having grown up in Eugene, Les was a proud and loud Oregon Duck.
Over the years, he and his family attended as many football games at Autzen Stadium as possible.
They were season ticket holders.
There was no doubt he was a dyed-in-the-feathers Ducks fan.
He was a current board member of the University of Oregon Alumni Association, and founding member of the local chapter of the UOAA in this region.
Les was an incredible father, a loving and protective husband, and a loyal friend.
He was also supremely quick-witted, gifted with the ability to imitate accents from all over the world.
He read voraciously, among his favorites: the Jack Aubrey mariner novels, mystery, spy and crime books and, of course, all of the current journals and opinions pertaining to the law.
His superior mind was always on overdrive.
He was born in 1956 to A. Kingsley and Ingrid Weatherhead, professors at the University of Oregon.
He earned his bachelor’s degree at the University of Oregon Honors College in 1977, and his Juris Doctor at the University of Washington School of Law in 1980.
He married Anali Torrado on June 24th, 1985 on the island of Guam.
His spirit lives on in his family: his devoted wife Anali; son Spencer; daughters Madeleine and Audrey; his sisters Lyn-Kristin and Andrea; his mother Ingrid; mother-in-law Lilia; brothers-in-law Alan and Arnel; niece and nephews Inge, Emil, Chelsea, and AJ; and his dear friends, especially those whose love of the Oregon Ducks defied reason.
A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, May 21, 2016 at 9:30 a.m. at St. Aloysius Catholic Church in Spokane, 330 E. Boone, Spokane, WA with Rev.
Peter Byrne, S.J.
Attendees are encouraged to sport a bowtie in his honor, refresh or learn the beloved University of Oregon fight song, and join the family in a loving celebration of his life.
All are invited to a reception of laughter and reminiscences at the John J. Hemmingson Center at Gonzaga University afterwards.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks donations be made to the University of Oregon Leslie R. Weatherhead Memorial Scholarship Fund at any Washington Trust Bank.
Les was deeply loved and will be dearly missed by all who respected and loved him.
Arrangements have been entrusted to:
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