Robert McDermott

November 29, 1924June 8, 2018
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Robert Joseph McDermott, 93, died Friday, June 8th, 2018 in Clearwater, FL.

His wife Betty passed away in 2016 at their home in Clearwater. He is survived by his four children. Robert J. McDermott Jr., fiancé Lisa Kane, James T. McDermott, wife Shannon, Laurie M. Alexander, husband Joseph and John W, McDermott. Grandchildren: James P. McDermott 26, Joseph S. Alexander III 22, Joshua T. McDermott 19, Sarah E. Alexander 18, Ryan M. Alexander 16, Keegan J. McDermott 4, Finnegan J, McDermott 4, and Fiona I McDermott 4.

Robert enlisted in the Air Force in 1943 and was honorably discharged in 1946 having been issued the World War II Victory Medal and ATO Medal. He earned a Business Administration Degree in 1950. A law Degree in 1952 and a Juris Doctor Degree that was conferred on him in December 1967. At the University of Florida, he was Founder and first President of the Marketing Society, Chairman of the Southeastern Conference for the Cardinal Newman Society. Student Chairman of the Student Union, Justice on the Honor Court and CO Chairman of the Florida Gator Political Party. He was a member of the KAPPA ALPHA Social Fraternity and DELTA THETA PHI Legal Fraternity.

Robert began practicing law in Clearwater, FL in 1952. He was appointed Justice of the Peace by then Governor LeRoy Collins in January 1953. He served as Municipal Judge for the city of Safety Harbor. He was elected Commander of the American Legion Turner Brandon Post 7. He served as Chairman of the world Softball Tournament when the Clearwater Bombers last won. He was past president of the Clearwater Bar Association and the Mid County Bar Association. He was authorized to practice before all state courts, The Federal District and Circuit Courts, as well as The United States Supreme Court. He was Chairman of the Pinellas Democratic Party and elected State Committeeman for Pinellas County on the State Democratic Party. In 1961, he co-founded First Federal Savings and Loan Association of Largo and served on its Board of Directors as Vice President, twice as President pro tem, and then several years as its Chairman of the Board of Directors. He was General Counsel during its existence. In 1992, he was Board Certified as a specialist in Civil Trial Law. In 2000, he became Board Certified in Wills, Trusts, and Estates. In 2005, Robert retired from the practice of law and enjoyed playing golf, attending Rays games, and “most of all enjoying Betty’s superb cooking and visiting those great, smart, and beautiful grandkids.”

A gathering will be held 1pm Wednesday, June 20, 2018, with a memorial service to immediately follow at Sylvan Abbey Funeral Home, 2853 Sunset Point Rd, Clearwater, FL 33759.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to Morton Plant Foundation.


  • Gathering Wednesday, June 20, 2018
  • Memorial Service Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Robert McDermott

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Dennis Ryder

June 29, 2018

I was very fond of Bob and his wife Betty. They were two very special people who radiated joy and happiness and were both very easy to talk to. Bob was my attorney when I first went into business in 1988 until the time he retired in 2005. He was like a father giving good advice to a son. Betty was like a mother, always talking to you and listening to your response. I loved both of them very much and the McDermott children and grandchildren were blessed by God to have such wonderful parents and grandparents. You will be missed Bob, especially by your family. I know that God has a special place in heaven for you, right next to your beautiful wife Betty. Rest in peace Bob. Denny Ryder, Denny's Plumbing, Clearwater Florida

John R Bonner Sr.

June 19, 2018

y memories of Bob date from 1952 when I was called to serve in the Air Force during the Korean War; he replaced me at Wolfe Wightman & Rowe when I left for service; of course I knew wife Betty [Barnes] as she was in my class at Clearwater High School. Bob and I had many cases together and as adversaries [he was always highly ethical and all that any lawyer should be proud of.] I remember a picture of Bob and Betty published in the Clearwater Sun with the caption "Bass for both"; showing them each with the fish they had caught that day; and prompting my kidding whenever I saw them as I would call them "bass for both." He will be missed and I know he is in our Fathers blessed care. I am unable to attend his services tomorrow as I now live in Alachua where I limit my practise to pro bono service from our home but my thoughts and prayers will be with all of his and Betty's families.

John R. Bonner Sr.

Kim Kesling Williams

June 18, 2018

Kim Kesling Williams
Bob and Betty lived across the street from us on Pinewood Dr in
Both families had 4 children and I remember all of us playing games and riding bikes together outside
My thoughts and prayers are with the family
God Bless

Marc Rogers

June 18, 2018

I first met Mr. McDermott when I was a young Chiropractor in Largo 18 years ago. For some reason, he took a liking to me and we ate lunch regularly. He also helped my practice very much, which helped me immensely. He was highly intelligent and always in good spirits. I was able to help in my practice a few times this past year and it was great to see him again. he was a great man and I will never forget him. My thoughts are with his family. God Bless you all.

Walt Jarrell

June 17, 2018

My Uncle Bob taught me the proper grip and basics of swinging a golf club, I think I was 16 at the time. When we were kids he'd take us (my cousins and myself) out scalloping in his boat. But Bobs most notorious statement was "Get your gear troops, were going to the farm" and we'd fly into a maniac of excitement, as kids we were always ready for adventure. Great memories from a very wonderful man indeed.

Michael Carr

June 15, 2018

Bob. We met 55 years ago in Clearwater when I helped with babysitting "Little Bobby". Enjoyed many great memories working the tree farm with you and my brothers. Can still visualize you on the tractor with that cigar in your mouth and wearing those boots and blue jeans. Can still taste those yummy breakfasts you whipped up. Thank you to Bobby jr for calling in a priest before taking your last breath. Say hi to my parents in heaven. I love you. Mike Carr.