Robert Bryan Deane

April 26, 1929May 1, 2020

Robert Bryan Deane, a maritime attorney, passed away peacefully in his home on May 1, 2020, after falling victim to the Covid-19 Virus. Bob was born in New Orleans on April 26, 1929. He was preceded in death by his parents, Bryan Baily Deane and Lillian Hufft Deane, and his brother, David Louis Deane. Bob attended Louisiana State University and Law School where was a Moot Court finalist, a member of the Moot Court Board and a member of Phi Delta Phi. He received a Bachelor of Laws degree in 1953 and a Juris Doctor degree in 1964. He served as an officer in the U.S. Infantry from 1953 to 1955. Bob practiced law with Chaffe McCall from 1959 until his retirement in 2001. His practice of 50 years consisted primarily of admiralty, insurance, and casualty litigation. He served on Chaffe McCall’s Management Committee, and as head of the firm’s Admiralty Section. Bob was a member of the New Orleans, Louisiana State, Federal 5th and 11th Circuits, and U.S. Supreme Court Bars, and the American Bar Association. He was a Proctor in the Maritime Law Association of the United States, where he served on the Law of the Sea Committee and the Carriage of Goods by Sea Committee. Bob was an associate member of the Association of Average Adjusters of London and the American Arbitration Association. A lover of the water, Bob spent much of his time on his sailboat on Lake Pontchartrain or bare boating in the British Virgin Islands. His passion for travel, shared with his wife Linda, brought him around the world; just eight weeks ago he was on safari in Africa. A life-long musician and collector of instruments, he spent many years playing the banjo and harmonica with the New Orleans Banjos Plus Two. He was a member of the Southern Yacht Club, a former member of the Pickwick Club as well as several carnival organizations. Bob is survived by this wife of 39 year, Linda Laborde Deane, and his three children, Diane Deane Smith (Douglas), Robert Bryan Deane, Jr. (Megan) and Keith Laborde Deane, as well as grandchildren, Deane Fraser, Madelyn Smith Owens (Joseph), Spencer Smith, Kinsey Deane, Lillian Deane, Robert Bryan Deane III, and two great grandchildren. A private graveside service will be held in Metairie Cemetery in New Orleans. In lieu of flowers please send a donation in Bob’s memory to Covenant House New Orleans or the charity of your choice. To view and sign the guest book, please visit


Robert Bryan Deane

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Christopher Carey

June 9, 2020

Please accept my deepest sympathy and condolences on Bob's passing. I was not aware of this until I saw an announcement on the MLA's website today, and I am sorry to learn of it. Bob was a fine attorney. I recall several cases with him in the 1980's and 1990's, and always found him to be forthright, honorable, and personable. He will be missed in the maritime legal community.

William McLellan

May 20, 2020

I worked with Bob at Chaffe in the late 80's. He was a 10+ person in every category. Sorry to hear of his passing and wish his family all the best during this sad time.

Barbara Mattingly

May 10, 2020

Although I did not know Bob well, I knew him as a kind & gentle man with a great sense of humor.
He and my husband were left to their own devises at their wives’ high school reunion parties, the wives table hopping to visit classmates. Fred looked forward to those visits with Bob. They shared the same love of music and boating.
Mostly, I feel grateful to Bob for being such a wonderful husband to my dear friend, Linda.
Thank you, Bob.

Anne Deane Roeling

May 5, 2020

Linda, I am saddened beyond belief. Bobby was one of only five
cousins that I had and I loved him dearly. We were close as children
and remained so in college but drifted apart once we married and
started families. He will always be in in my heart and mind. I regret not getting to know you. I believe you are a very special
I know Bobby loved you dearly.

I send you my deepest sympathy.


Mo Crane

May 5, 2020

Dear Linda, Keith and Family,

I am so sorry for your loss. Both myself and my staff loved working with and getting to know Bob. He shared his sense of humor and on many occasions his sage advice. I got to hear him play the banjo on several occasions and was amazed at how good he was despite picking it up at a later age. We will miss him.

Mo Crane

John Rankin

May 4, 2020

Bob was a wonderful, funny, charming person, and I'm very sad to find him gone from this earth. I taught him guitar and banjo lessons for several years, and I always looked forward to seeing him. He had his own way of doing things, and sometimes he taught me an easier process or a new perspective. He had a generous heartfelt love for music, and we shared that in our time together.

Bob gave me and my wife Vitrice four coffee cups decorated with New Orleans coffee can labels for Christmas one year. Not only are they used and appreciated every day, they are never allowed in the dishwasher. We will continue to think of Bob with every cup of coffee for years to come. I was blessed to know him.

John Landis

May 4, 2020

I first met Bob when, as a young lawyer, I had the good fortune of taking a deposition of his client in Rotterdam. I still recall how kind and fun to be around he was. He truly was a role model for lawyers of my generation.

Dan Caruso

May 4, 2020

Bob was one of the finest people I ever met in the practice of law. Good lawyer, but more importantly, a good man. Like so many lawyers of that generation, his word was his bond and he seemed to enjoy, as did I, that wonderful sense of camaraderie in the admiralty bar, even when we were against each other. I was very happy to see that he had such a wonderful retirement. I know he is resting in peace.

Lorre Lei Jackson

May 4, 2020

My deepest sympathy to Linda and family. I have known Bobby since I was 5 years old and moved around the corner from the Deans. I grew up in a neighborhood of 5 boys and I was the only girl. Bobby was eight years my senior and I'm sure he considered me a pest. As David's big brother, we all looked up to him as the leader. It was the time of WWII so we built forts, fought battles with toy soldiers, tanks and jeeps and climbed the camphor tree in front of the Dean house in order to throw camphor berries down on passing cars. Our paths continued to cross during our adult years, but it is the memories of a simpler, innocent time of our shared childhood that I look back on with great fondness.

Natalie Bernius James

May 4, 2020

Blessings to you Linda. Bobby was my father's favorite cousin. His grandmother and my grandmother Adele Kresig were sisters. Bobby has always been the nicest gentleman in every aspect and so good looking. they reconnected for they both loved boats , sailing and the SYC
natalie bernius james