Lansing legal community mourns Stuart Dunnings Jr.

“He was one hell of an attorney. He was good, tremendous! He would win cases that were unbelievable that you never thought he would win.”

That’s how Rudy Wilson remembers Lansing legal icon Stuart Dunnings Jr., who died Wednesday. He was 58.

Wilson, Dunning’s good friend of more than 50 years, was reminiscing for WLNS-TV reporter Alison Himelhoch’s post on the station’s Web site.

Dunnings Jr. had a long and distinguished career as a forceful advocate and a champion of civil rights.

He was Lansing’s first black lawyer, reports The Lansing State Journal.

Dunnings was the father of Ingham County Prosecutor Stuart Dunnings III. From The Lansing State Journal:

Stuart Dunnings III credits his father’s good name with helping to win him election to the prosecutor’s office in 1996.

“People think I’m Stuart Dunnings,” Dunnings III said. “The real Stuart Dunnings is my dad.”

Dunnings III noted that his father set high standards and that not meeting those standards was not an option. He said he realized early on that: “I was the son of a great man whose greatness I would never achieve,” Dunnings III said. “I’m just proud to have been his son.”

Services for Stuart Dunnings Jr. are scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday at Trinity African Methodist Episcopal Church in Lansing. Riley Funeral Home in Lansing is handling the arrangements.