Richard Shugrue Commentary: Pat Green 10/12/17 10/16/17 11:25:15 PM
No Chair Was a Match for the Magical Prof. Pat Green
By Richard Shugrue
CreightonLaw Professor, Ret.
The rasp of his key in the office next to mine – and it was so for more than three dozen years – announced Pat Green’s arrival each day, as the cheerful “so long” as he headed out the door hours later brought an end to counseling, teaching, writing and gossiping at least at school.
The only law prof to ride the bus on mornings, except when Bill Ginsburg, or brother John, or Lord know who passed the stop on Leavenworth offered a ride, so his tales of the day might include the yarn spun by a fellow passenger.
One L kids were petrified of him, not because he was scary, but because he was, well, formidable. In truth, he was no Prof. Kingsfield but a genuine Mr. Chips. They’d come to adore him as they were wrapped in the magic web of his incredible mind and the mystery of torts. As the years passed, Green Junkies sat on the floor in his impossibly crowded office as he enlightened and, of course, entertained them.
The students, indeed, most of his colleagues, had no idea of the rich role he played on the campus and in town: this workshop, the Philosophy Society, the med school’s special committee on human research, the state court on industrial relations, marvelous Larry Myers’ breakfasts to discuss issues of the day, and the time in the 60’s when one of my Upward Bound kids had to face the music in the old municipal court and I desperately called upon Pat. Naturally, he didn’t say, “I’m busy,” but, “What time should I be there?”
And family? Devotion, pride, concern, joy and generosity engulfed the kids and grateful warmth and fealty surrounded Barbara. He was goofy in his love for her. The entire family fulfilled him.
Could I share just one impish tale? Pat came next door every day to share a book, an idea, an anecdote. Once, in his heftier years, he rushed in to gleefully relate a new gem and sat on an inexpensive Queen Anne chair which came from Bombay Imports. I kept one eye on the graceful “S” of a leg as he gestured ever more wildly, until the chair collapsed with him. Pat just kept on talking, informing and enchanting his old pal.
Survivors include his wife, Barbara S. Green; children Kevin P. Green, Christopher D. Green; step-children Jessica (Jeff) Voelker, Seth (Denise) Perlman, Ben Perlman, all of Omaha; grandchildren Thomas Green and Grace Green of Lincoln Neb., Alexis Perlman, Sarah Perlman, Anna Voelker, Rachel Voelker, Norah Perlman, Ruby Perlman; and siblings Mary Kay Green of Kansas City, Therese (Paul) Bigelow of Whidbey Island Wash., Jane Alseth, John K. Green, Margaret Green, Hon. Elizabeth Crnkovich, all Omaha, Alice (Jim) Wright of Delano, Minn.
The family will receive friends Tuesday, October 24, 7 to 9 p.m. at the John A. Gentleman Mortuaries 72nd Street Chapel (1010 North 72 Street).. Services will be held Wednesday, October 25, at 10 a.m. in the Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, 113 N. 18 St.