We just received the sad news that former Chief Justice Bill Holohan passed away. Here is his obituary, kindly provided by his family.

Former Arizona Chief Justice William A. "Bill" Holohan

WILLIAM A. “BILL” HOLOHAN passed away peacefully on July 23, 2010, with his family at his bedside. Bill died of complications following surgery. He was 82 and resided most recently in Peoria.

Bill was born in Tucson on June 1, 1928, the only child of Andrew Holohan and Dorothy Bennett Holohan, a member of the Bennett Arizona Pioneer family. He attended grade school and Loyola High School in Los Angeles.

Bill enrolled in the University of Arizona in 1946. Following graduation from law school in 1950, Bill was inducted into the Army, where he served in the Judge Advocate General Corp. He served a tour of duty in Korea, and was awarded the Bronze Star.

Before his deployment to Korea, Bill met his wife of 47 years, the former Kathryn Dewey. Upon Bill’s discharge from the military, he and Kay married and moved to Phoenix. Bill’s first job was as an Assistant United States Attorney. He was hired by the then-United States Attorney, Jack D.H. Hays, who would later become Bill’s lifelong friend and colleague.

In 1960, Bill left the U.S. Attorney’s Office and entered private practice. He practiced with Lou Whitney, a prominent lawyer, until Whitney’s death. He was appointed to the Superior Court bench in 1963 by Governor Paul Fannin. Bill was elected the presiding judge of the juvenile court by his colleagues in 1969.

In 1972, Bill was appointed by Governor Jack Williams to complete the tenure of retiring Justice Jesse Udall on the Arizona Supreme Court. Bill handily won re-election to this position in 1972. He served on the Court until he retired on January 5, 1989. He was Chief Justice from 1982 until 1987.

Following retirement from the bench, Bill entered private practice for a time with his son, Brian. Bill later accepted the position of Director of the Arizona Prosecuting Attorneys’ Advisory Counsel, a position he held until he resigned to care for his beloved Kay, who passed away in February 2000.

Bill is survived by four children, Mark Holohan (Tracy), Ellen Lloyd (Russ) of Las Vegas, Brian Holohan, Lori Holohan of Denver, and four grandchildren. Private funeral services will be held at St. Paul’s Catholic Church. In honor of Bill and his love for his Irish heritage, a wake will be held on August 14, 2010, to celebrate the life of this special man. The location and time will be announced later.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to Child Focus, Inc., a non-profit organization helping youth in foster care. Child Focus is located at 4310 S. Cameron St., Suite 12, Las Vegas, NV, 89103. Kindly note on your check that the donation is in Bill’s honor so that Child Focus can properly acknowledge your gift.