Retired Judge Joseph Suozzi, whose son, Tom, is currently running to represent northeast Queens in Congress, has died.
Joseph Suozzi, 95, succumbed to natural causes on Sunday night, Newsday reported. He made history in November 1949 when, at the age of 28, he became the youngest elected or appointed judge in the United States in becoming a city court judge for Glen Cove in Nassau County.
A native of Potenza, Italy, Judge Suozzi immigrated to the U.S. with his mother in 1925. He attended school in Glen Cove and Oyster Bay and served as a member of the U.S. Air Force during World War II.
Following the war, Judge Suozzi attended Harvard Law School and eventually was admitted to practice law in New York State, joining as a partner at a law firm in Glen Cove.
After serving on the Glen Cove bench for six years, the judge stepped down in September 1955 to run for mayor of Glen Cove, a pursuit that proved successful. Joseph Suozzi served as Glen Cove mayor from 1956 to 1960, then returned to the courts in 1961 after being elected to a 14-year term as a New York State Supreme Court justice.
After being re-elected to the Supreme Court, Judge Suozzi was appointed by then-Governor Hugh Carey in 1976 as an associate justice for the Appellate Division, Second Department. He resigned the bench four years later to return to private practice as a senior partner with the Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein law firm.
His son, Tom, followed some of his father’s footsteps, having served as Glen Cove mayor. In 2001, Tom Suozzi was elected Nassau County executive, a position he would hold for eight years. He is presently campaigning to succeed the outgoing Congressman Steve Israel as representative of the Third Congressional District, which covers northeast Queens, northern Nassau and northwestern Suffolk counties.
Along with Tom Suozzi, Joseph Suozzi is also survived by daughter Rosemary Mancini Lloyd, Dr. William Suozzi and Christopher Suozzi. He was preceded in death by the late Joseph M. Suozzi.
When contacted by QNS, the Tom Suozzi campaign said it was waiting for further information from the Suozzi family before commenting.
Biographical information from the law firm of Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein.