James Hamlin Dyer (aka Jimmy “Dog” Dyer) was born on September 7, 1948, in Rumford, Maine, to Helen Hamlin and Isaac Watson Dyer. Jim was the younger of two, survived by his brother Isaac. He was regarded as a tremendous athlete in his younger years, but some of his old buddies probably remember him focusing more on time outside of those school walls.
After graduating from Winthrop High School in 1966, he attended the University of Southern Maine Gorham, where he obtained a degree in Teaching. After spending a few years teaching on the East Coast, he would eventually make his way down to Houston, TX, with his long-time friend, Joe Libby, to attend South Texas College of Law. Few know this, but he was accepted into law school based solely on a one-page application. A bold move for a bold man.
Jim graduated from law school in 1974 and began working in private practice. Shortly after, he helped form Dyer & Libby, Attorneys at Law on July 4th, 1976. This partnership resulted in a lifelong career as a well-known criminal defense lawyer in the Houston area. Best known for his quick wit and charm in the courtroom, he enjoyed creating the light of truth a well-litigated case would produce. He was a member of the State Bar of Texas, the Southern District of Texas (Federal), and the American Bar Association. He truly lived a life of service, always looking for ways to help others. Every day he worked, he ran circles around some half his age, never once complaining.
Jim met and married the love of his life and mother of his children, Rhonda S. Dyer, who preceded him in death in 2011. While certainly accomplished as an attorney, Jim always claimed that his greatest accomplishment was his kids: Emily (1981), Jamison “Brodie” (1982), and Elizabeth (1989). Another “accomplishment” for which he greatly enjoyed taking credit was his granddaughters, Kendall and Robin, because without him… well… These two girls brought the most joy to him, as well as his most precious sidekick chihuahua, Winnie.
He was the life of the party and always shared the funniest jokes and stories. A family favorite story occurred every year at Christmastime. “How Winnie Saved Christmas” told the story of a brave little chihuahua who helped Santa deliver gifts to all of the boys and girls. The story changed each year, but the storyteller remained the same.
He enjoyed attending all activities involving his granddaughters, especially softball games; playing golf with his son; schooling everyone in cribbage and poker; or simply sitting on the porch of his house in Galveston, enjoying the Gulf breeze, with Winnie in his arms.
Whether it was a good chuckle, sound advice, or somewhere in between, one could not forget the impact he had on them. He never judged anyone and possessed saint-like patience for all.
He was truly one-of-a-kind and will be deeply missed by the many who have had the pleasure of crossing his path.
There's still time to send flowers to the Celebration of Life at the St. Stephen's United Methodist Church at 2:00 PM on May 21, 2018.
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