Monday, September 22, 2003

William C. Oldfield, 60, practiced law through his battle with cancer

By Nicole Hamilton
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Judges breathed a sigh of relief when they saw attorney William C. Oldfield in their courtrooms.

"He was one of the lawyers who made our profession look good. He was upfront with his clients, and looked out for them ... and he was good with juries. He really knew what he was doing," said retired Kenton County Circuit Court Judge Raymond Lape.

Mr. Oldfield died of cancer Thursday at St. Elizabeth Medical Center North's Hospice Unit. The Crestview Hills resident was 60.

"He was the most social person you'd ever know. He really loved people. And he loved being a part of the bar association," said his wife of 37 years, Patricia A. Murphy Oldfield of Crestview Hills.

Raised in Covington, Mr. Oldfield graduated from Covington Catholic High School and earned degrees from the University of Dayton and the University of Kentucky, where he received his law degree in 1967.

That year, he passed the bar and began working as an attorney for the Internal Revenue Service.

About three years later, Mr. Oldfield started his own law practice with friends and fellow lawyers Jim Cobb and Pete Beasley. In 1971, he opened an office on Fourth Street in Covington, eventually known as Cobb, Oldfield, Davidson and Rieger. Mr. Cobb recently retired.

His daughter, Laura A. Oldfield, joined the firm about nine years ago.

Diagnosed with renal cancer in January, Mr. Oldfield continued to practice law even through painful chemotherapy.

"He had so much energy; he loved life," his wife said.

A skilled woodworker with a basement full of tools, Mr. Oldfield made a wooden gift for the Northern Kentucky Bar Association auction every year, in addition to furniture for his family.

He was president of the Northern Kentucky Bar Association in 1997 and chairman of the Kentucky Bar Association Annual Convention held in Covington in 2002.

Besides his wife and daughter, survivors include another daughter, Linda M. Vohl of Taylor Mill, and a grandson.

Visitation will be from 9:30-11:30 a.m. today at St. Agnes Church, 1680 Dixie Highway, Fort Wright. Mass of Christian burial will follow.

Burial will be in St. Mary's Cemetery, Fort Mitchell.

Memorials may be made to the Shriners Burn Institute for Children, 3229 Burnet Ave., Cincinnati, OH 45229.



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