20 SUPERLAWYERS.COM AT TORNEYS SELECTED TO SUPER LA WYERS WERE CHOSEN IN ACCORDANCE WI TH THE PROCESS ON PAGE 30.
BEASLEY JR.: I started to get my act
together my last year of high school, and
really started working and started flying. He
started teaching me. I took it so far beyond
what he was doing with it. I was leading
the only [World War II-era bomber] P-51D
formation team in the world. We would do
three airplanes in formation at night, loops
and rolls, using the Philadelphia skyline as a
horizon. I took that passion of ours [that] we
had together to the extreme, maybe to the
point of the way he took work.
SPECTER: I never flew with him. He never
asked me. Which was fine with me.
Nothing good could come out of it.
Beasley’s focus on the law could take its toll
on his relationships.
BEASLEY JR.: There were some
casualties. His marriage was a casualty.
My parents were able to get back
together at the end. They got remarried.
He felt bad about some of the stuff that
a smoke detector, and Jim succeeded in
the case. I showed up for work the next
day and the hallways were loaded with
smoke detectors. He said, ‘We’re giving
them away to people so this doesn’t
Like his father, Jim Beasley Jr. spent much
of his early life in trouble. But he righted
himself, went to work at The Beasley Firm,
and developed a bond with his father.
BEASLEY JR.: I was messing up in school.
Mom and Dad got separated. The divorce
took nine years. Frankly, he had every
right in the world to be disappointed.
You take a look at my transcript—here
is a successful guy, and his kid’s being
a jackass at junior high school. I wasn’t
like a bad, hurtful kid—I didn’t torture
animals and push kids down the steps.
I was a kid who’d fart in class, whoopee
cushions, that kind of stuff. … I started to
get my act together early my last year of
Beasley and Kline share a lighthearted moment on Cape Cod in August 1988. Kline says Beasley once described their friendship as “a father-and-son
happened; he realized he had put work
in front of my mom. He kind of figured it
out at the end.
SLADE H. MCLAUGHLIN, founding
shareholder, McLaughlin & Lauricella: If
you sat with Mr. Beasley in a room, there
might not be any conversation. He wasn’t
a chit-chat guy. In the court, he turned
into a totally different person. He was this
smiling, mannered, friendly gentleman.
KLINE: Jim also was generous to a fault.
I can remember we had a case involving
a smoke detector in a housing project.
It was a residential unit that didn’t have