RIP William M. Hoeveler, a long-time well-respected judge in our District. here:
The Herald has a nice and detailed obit
Hoeveler even drew praise from the most infamous defendant ever to appear in his courtroom, the deposed Panamanian General Manuel Noriega, who was captured by U.S. forces that invaded Panama in late 1989, leading to a nationally covered Miami trial that was “the mother of all battles in the war on drugs,” as one prosecutor later described it.
“The one shining light through this legal nightmare has been your honor,” said Noriega, who was convicted of cocaine trafficking and racketeering charges in 1992. “You have acted as honest and fair as anyone can hope for.”
His judicial secretary for nearly 40 years, Janice Tinsman, once wrote that while Hoeveler is “often considered by people to be the epitome of what a judge should be ... there is another thing he has taught us that many people do not realize, and that is we are on a journey in our lives.”
“I have seen him journey back from a stroke because he believed in what he did in serving the public,” Tinsman wrote in 2011, when Hoeveler won the Federal Bar Association’s Judicial Excellence award, named after the late U.S. District Judge Edward B. “Ned” Davis. “He did not just sit down and not come back. I have seen him journey back from the loss of his wife [Griff] only a couple of months after suffering his stroke.
“He did not quit. ... He loves the law. He did not give up. ... He has shown us that he is a man of faith in God. He has shown us that our paths in life, no matter what has put us on that path or what is in front of us, that we must always journey on.”