‘We’re family’ — Dozens gather to mourn slain Judge Raymond Myles

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The hearse carrying the casket of slain Cook County Judge Raymond Myles was escorted by two Cook County Sheriff’s Office squad cars. | Sam Charles/Sun-Times

Dozens of people had flocked to the Stony Island Church of Christ by late Friday afternoon to pay their respects to Judge Raymond Myles, who was fatally shot outside his home last week.

Mourners at the visitation included family, friends, and Myles’ colleagues from the Cook County judicial system: judges, prosecutors, sheriff’s officers.

“People feel bad, they’re upset,” Judge Diann Marsalek said outside the church. “We’re family. We have to look out for each other.”

Myles, 66, was shot about 4:50 a.m. on April 10 in the 9400 block of South Forest. His girlfriend was also shot in a leg but survived.

Less than three days later, accused getaway driver Joshua Smith, 37, was charged with first-degree murder, second-degree murder and obstruction, police said.

The shooter has not been arrested.

The motive for the shootings was robbery and Myles was targeted — butthe incidenthad nothing to do with his position as a judge, police said.

Even so, Myles’ murder has struck a chord with other judges.

“It’s something you don’t regularly think of,” said Judge James Carroll. “But once something like this happens, everybody kind of pulls together.”

Myles’ open casket was flanked by about 10 floral arrangements, several of which were sent by Cook County government employees, including one from the “Criminal Dept. Clerks.”

Outside, a Leak & Sons Funeral Home hearse — escorted by two Cook County Sheriff’s Office squad cars — was ready to take the casket away.

During his seven years on the bench in Room 204 of the Leighton Criminal Courthouse, Myles garnered a reputation for tough love. Though he ordered those who were late to court to write lines, he also loaned shirts and ties to those who did not have them and worked to point many arrestees toward a high school diploma or GED.

Friday’s visitation was to end at 8 p.m.

Myles’ funeral service is at 10 a.m. Saturday at House of Hope, 752 E. 114th St., with viewing from 9 a.m.

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