Utah attorney Robert J. DeBry, born and raised in east Idaho, dies at 85

Robert J. DeBry and coworkers

HOLLADAY, Utah (KSL.com) – Longtime Utah personal injury attorney Robert J. DeBry died last week at his Holladay home at the age of 85. Family members say he died of natural causes.

DeBry founded Robert J. DeBry & Associates in 1980 and, according to his obituary, worked for the company until spring 2020.

DeBry was an advocate for drunk driving victims and the use of helmets while cycling, and founded the Buy a Helmet, Save a Life initiative. The initiative has distributed more than a quarter of a million bicycle helmets under the cost or donation in Utah. DeBry was also a supporter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and donated $ 500 for cases he settled or won, his obituary said. Debry also paid for taxi rides during the main holidays to help people get home safely.

He received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Utah Association for Justice in 2011. In addition, DeBry was named one of the Top 100 Trial Lawyers by the American Association for Justice for six years in a row.

DeBry was born on October 10, 1935 in Preston, Idaho, to James and Winnifred Jensen DeBry. He grew up in Rigby, Idaho, and served as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Netherlands from 1956 to 1958.

After serving as a missionary, DeBry graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in art history in 1960 and a PhD in law from the University of Utah in 1963.

According to the obituary, a service will be held at the grave on Monday, May 24th at 12:00 noon at Larkin Sunset Gardens, 1950 E. 10600 South, Sandy. Instead of flowers, the family suggests contributing to the Mission Fund or the Humanitarian Fund of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

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