Ed Abel is an attorney in Oklahoma City. He received his law degree from the University of Oklahoma College of Law in 1966. He practiced as a personal injury attorney with the Lamkin and Wolf firm for 10 years before starting his own firm.
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Below is a short selection of the interview with Ed Abel. You can listen to the full interview by visiting the Chickasaw Nation Law Library at Oklahoma City University School of Law.
KEK: Did you ever contemplate giving up the law practice when you completely lost your sight?
EA: Well I thought about it and of course I had to deal with the issue of what can I do. Now frankly I like practicing law. I like the people I work with and I like the clients that I represent. I can’t say that I have always really liked every client that I’ve ever represented. But I have sure liked most of them. I think I have been able to do a good job for my clients. I have been able to get a lot of satisfaction out of helping people. I said to you earlier and I truly mean this, that it gives me a great deal of satisfaction to be able to help people. You know my clients come to me because they are really in need. One of the greatest things that’s ever happened to me in the practice of law, I represented a lady who had 2 little girls. Her husband, their father was killed, burned to death in a horrible truck accident. I was able to represent them. This lady had been married for 35 years. She had never worked outside the home. She wasn’t educated or trained to work outside the home. She’d been a homemaker and her husband had been the financial support of that family. Now all of a sudden that was gone. They were at their, she was at her wit’s end. She didn’t know where to go or what to do and I was able to help them. Well years after I had represented them, I got a letter from one of the girls. One of the twin girls and she wrote to me and she just said “Mr. Abel I wanted to write this letter to you and take this opportunity to thank you.” She said “I am now a pharmacist.” She said “I got to go to college and to pharmacy school because of what you did to recover for my mom and me. Because of you I was able to go to college and get a degree and earn a livelihood.” Now I become emotional even talking about it because you can’t believe how much that meant to me to get that letter. That was one of the nicest things that has ever happened to me. When I…I told you about representing Greg Walton.
EA: To be able to see Greg go ahead and get his medical degree and to know that he is a practicing, very successful surgeon and of all the people that he has been able to help and to be able to continue to be friends with Greg because we’re still friends to this day. I see him and talk to him every once in a while, not all the time, but every once in a while. That means so much to me. So many other memories I have of being able to help someone who really needed help and to be able to represent them has just meant a great deal to me. So it gives me a great deal of satisfaction to be able to do that.