By Ron Hayes
GULF STREAM — Robert L. Becker Jr., a winter resident of The St. Andrew’s Club for several years, died peacefully on April 15. He was 87.
A lawyer who specialized in securities and transactional law, Mr. Becker joined the Pittsburgh, Pa., firm of Kirkpatrick, Pomeroy, Lockhart & Johnson in 1949 and remained its longest-serving partner at the time of his death.
Robert Louis Becker Jr. was born in 1924 in Milwaukee. During World War II, he served on the destroyer U.S. Walke in the Pacific theater, was discharged as a lieutenant j.g., and went on to graduate from Cornell Law School in 1948.
In obituaries published both here and in Pittsburgh, his family made a point of noting that he had “been a friend of Bill W. since April 17, 1995.” The phrase is a well-known reference to Alcoholics Anonymous and its founder.
During his years here, Mr. Becker volunteered at The Hanley Center in West Palm Beach and The Crossroads Club in Delray Beach, reaching out to offer encouragement to others.
“He was delightful,” said a friend and longtime board member at The Crossroads Club, a nonprofit meeting facility for people recovering from addictions. “Very outgoing, with a wonderful sense of humor and very athletic.”
Mr. Becker remained active, attending the 7 a.m. meetings almost every day, said the friend, who asked to remain anonymous.
During his recovery, Mr. Becker had been treated at the Hanley-Hazelden clinic in Minneapolis, his friend said, and volunteered at The Hanley Center, keeping in touch with former alumni to help them stay well.
Mr. Becker is survived by Annette Willock, his wife of 32 years; three children from a previous marriage, Anne Hulley of Northampton, Mass.; Emily Naunheim of San Mateo, Calif., and Robert L. Becker III of Honolulu; eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.
A memorial service was held April 26 at Third Presbyterian Church of Pittsburgh, where he had served on the Session and taught Sunday school for many years.
The family has asked that donations be made to The Hanley Center, 5200 East Ave., West Palm Beach, FL 33407, or The Crossroads Club, 1700 Lake Ida Road, Delray Beach, FL 33444, or to a charity or organization of your choice.