Hero at Law

Frank Decker Cady Attorney at Law

I recall being somewhere between eight or nine, I had narrowly escaped taking a gun shot to the head at the hands of a man who lived in my home.  

I met a hero when I was a kid,  this left an indelible impression on me to this day.  

Later I was called on to testify about the incident, I felt helpless, fear and a certain amount of dread realizing my attacker would not like what I had to say, I just wanted to run away and hide.  That was how I met Frank Decker Cady, attorney at law.  I still have an image in my head of looking up at his fluffy hair bouncing as he led me directly into the court house.

It is a given that when you go through life you will hear those jokes that berate attorneys and sear their synonymous identity as one with ever gorging bottom feeders.  Through the years I have rebuked the sense of these jokes with the idea that a certain type of individual was unfortunately drawn to becoming an attorney. The problem was not the courses of study of the law itself.  The problem was a lacking of filters like psychological screening.   Attorneys endure an extremely high pressure work style.  They end up becoming an eventual embodiment of the cases they take on.

This is a fair disclaimer, I have a biased opinion, having said this, I would like to share below what I learned about this man since.

Frank Cady, as a child, enjoyed tinkering, as many children do.  When he was twelve to thirteen he designed and built himself a “mini-motor bike” using as a model one his friend had received from his parents, of course designing in upgrades he saw outlined in the catalogue for the “better models”.  This was a significant accomplishment, even minus the welding portion that was done by the local town welder.  Frank was not satisfied with this feat, when his friends were taking drivers education he designed himself a gyro copter.  Frank’s father was not as thrilled to guide his son to the welder shop on this one, so they made a compromise and Frank agreed he would get a degree in Aeronautical Engineering.  He was accepted to California Polytechnic. He attended one year before he realized that was a lot of work for his endearing hobby.   Instead of completing his degree in engineering he instead tossed up options between swapping to a degree in medicine, business or law.  After taking the LSAT entrance exam for Hastings University, Frank opted to go to that university and he graduated and passed the bar exam with the apparent ease most people relate to sitting down to an evening meal.    Frank D Cady first attended the University of Nevada and received a Bachelor degree cum laude, in 1978 then received his Juris Doctor from Hastings College of the Law, University of California, in 1981.  While Frank attended law school he spent his summers working with construction workers mostly in the Lake Tahoe area pounding nails.   He used the money to pay for some of his school and keep himself sane.

Frank Decker Cady, is now the age 62 years and he still works as lawyer while he calls himself a recovering attorney.  Susanville, CA is his hometown where his family lived for several generations.  Susanville is also known as “Prison Town” but previously known as “the Land of no sweats”.   Frank is also a licensed contractor, since from when he put himself through school pounding nails during the summer breaks from school as well as a licensed pilot and belongs to several organizations where he works to help others.  Cady has given generously of his time for such things as mediating for the annual Rotarian speech contests to benefit local high school students.  Doing things like this he said “is what it is all about, you give something back”.  

I turned our conversation downward and asked some questions about generalizations on attorneys and so forth.  I asked Frank about an article I read earlier this year referring to a study performed in conjunction between the Linda Albert, representing the American Bar association and  Patrick R Krill the director of the legal professionals program at the Hazleton Betty Ford Foundation.  The article found that a staggering number of legal professionals suffer from the effects of overuse of alcohol and drugs. Sadly, depression being a factor in many attorneys’ lives.  The study reported that one quarter of the nations attorneys reported they suffer from these problems.   Frank told me “it is not the activities ladened with alcohol. “It is the fact the job is stressful.  We represent who we have as clients and that leaves others to remember you represented their enemy.  I have had my friends as clients, people I grew up with, that means I have friends I grew up with and had as friends who were not my clients and when both happen at the same time it is very stressful”.

The law is not capable of providing a satisfactory resolution to everyone, every time.  Cady battled these trials of personal conflict with an open mind and with the belief he did what was best for the group based on what knowledge he had at the time.   Frank Cady almost sang the words “I do the best I can do for the situation”. Simple advise we could all benefit from.  We should all do the best we can in our situations and allow ourselves to be happy with what we have done.  

Citation: Lawyers’ alcohol-use study: Implications, next steps discussed

Citation: Lawyers’ alcohol-use study: Implications, next steps discussed

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