Arthur Gordon Grant Jr. passed away peacefully at his home in Diamondhead, Mississippi on Saturday the 7th of May in the presence of his loving wife and sons. Gordon was born on May 16, 1945, in New Orleans, the first of three children in the family of Arthur Gordon Grant Sr. and Martha McCutchon Grant, now deceased. He is survived by his devoted wife of 26 years, Charisse Grant; three children, Arthur Gordon Grant III, Douglas McCutchon Grant and Kathryn Grant Tyndall; daughters-in-law Nolan Grant and Jennifer Grant; 14 grandchildren; two sisters, Judith Grant Woodley and Elaine Grant Wilkinson, brothers-in-law Charles Woodley and James Wilkinson; three nephews and three nieces.
He grew up in New Orleans but spent much of his youth – happy weekends and summer vacations – at his parents’ second home in Pass Christian. Life on the Mississippi Gulf Coast afforded the opportunity to sail on the Mississippi Sound and fish the waters of the Gulf of Mexico, Saint Louis Bay, Bayou Portage, Wolf River and other waterways. The many hours spent on his father’s boat, the Naiad, incubated an enduring fascination with the sea and sea-going vessels that led to Gordon’s career in maritime law and admiralty.
Gordon attended Isidore Newman School in New Orleans; graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1967 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science; and received the juris doctor degree from Tulane Law School in 1970. After graduating from Tulane, he was admitted to the Louisiana bar and joined the firm of Montgomery Barnett. Gordon spent the next 46 years with the firm as a partner and head of its admiralty group. His lifelong interest in the maritime industry was an inheritance from his father and grandfather, both of whom were naval engineers.
Gordon was admitted to the practice of law before the United States Supreme Court; the U. S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals; the U. S. Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals; the U. S. District Courts for the Eastern, the Middle and the Western districts of Louisiana; the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas; the Supreme Court of Louisiana and all other state courts in Louisiana. He also argued cases before the National Transportation Safety Board and the United States Coast Guard. Gordon was a member of the Louisiana State Bar Association; the New Orleans Bar Association; the Federal Bar Association; the Bar Association of the Fifth Federal Circuit; and the Maritime Law Association of the United States. He served as a director of the Southeastern Admiralty Law Institute; as a member of the Board of Directors for the American Boat and Yacht Council; and as a member of the Board of Governors of the Propeller Club – Port of New Orleans. Gordon was also a member of the New Orleans Bar Association Inn of Court and the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers. He was presented the Distinguished Maritime Lawyer Award in 2006 by the New Orleans Bar Association. He taught Admiralty Law as an adjunct professor in the School of Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering at the University of New Orleans and contributed chapters to two foundational works on maritime law and admiralty: Recreational Boating Law and Benedict on Admiralty. Gordon was affiliated with the law firm of Gordon Arata Montgomery Barnett from 2017 until 2020 and with Brooks Gelpi Haasé thereafter.
Gordon’s career afforded him the opportunity to travel throughout the Western Hemisphere and Europe, preparing and presenting cases that sometimes involved the disappearance of ships lost at sea with all hands; collisions in international waters or on the Mississippi River that sometimes resulted in substantial casualties; and major oil spills with widespread environmental consequences. He represented the State of Louisiana in the landmark case arising from the 1976 Destrehan-Luling ferry disaster. The State Department of Highways owned and operated the George Prince ferry that was struck by a Norwegian tanker (SS Frosta) as it crossed the Mississippi River shortly after 6:00 a.m. on the morning of October 20th. Of the 90 passengers and crew members on board the George Prince, only a dozen survived. The 78 deaths still represent the greatest loss of life resulting from a ferryboat accident in the history of the United States.
Gordon was an avid sportsman who loved to hunt and fish or go boating. He also had a love affair with hot rod automobiles that dated from his teenage years.
The family wish to express their sincere gratitude to the caregivers of Southern Care Hospice who did so much to make Gordon comfortable during the year preceding his death: Teri, Mandy, Kaitlyn, Becky, Angela and James Reardon who, as chaplain, provided Gordon spiritual counsel. The family would also like to acknowledge Pam Bentz for the kindness, love, compassion and incredible patience she exhibited while providing day-to-day care for Gordon.
The funeral service for Gordon will be celebrated by the Reverend Mary Koppel, on Monday, May 16th, 2022, at 11:00am, at the St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 5303 Diamondhead Circle, Diamondhead, MS, 39525. Visitation will be at the church at 10:00am.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Paralyzed Veterans of America (PVA.org) or the Boykin Spaniel Rescue, Inc. (boykinspanielrescue.org)
Riemann Family Funeral Home, 9113 Kiln Delisle Rd., Pass Christian is serving the family. An online guestbook may be signed and photos and condolences may be offered at www.riemannfamily.com.
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Arthur Gordon Grant, Jr., please visit our floral store.