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James Beebe, 86; Noted L.A. Municipal Bond Lawyer

September 29, 2006|From a Times Staff Writer

James Warren Beebe, one of Southern California's most prominent municipal bond lawyers for more than 30 years, has died. He was 86.

Beebe died July 25 of cancer at Mission Hospital in Mission Viejo, according to his wife, Jeanne.

As an expert in writing and fashioning bonds, Beebe was instrumental in the financing of major projects bringing water, housing, industry and culture to the greater Los Angeles area.

He worked at O'Melveny & Myers for 20 years and for much of that time he was the head of the firm's municipal bond department. He was a key figure in the creation and issuance of the municipal bonds that financed construction of the Los Angeles Music Center. He also worked on a number of projects for the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California and Los Angeles International Airport.

After leaving O'Melveny & Myers in the early 1970s, he launched his own firm and continued his specialization in municipal bonds, redevelopment projects and public finance until retiring in 1997. His list of clients included the Metropolitan Water District, San Bernardino County and the cities of Inglewood, Carson and Industry.

Beebe was born in Cambridge, Mass., on June 28, 1920, and was raised in Los Angeles. After graduating from Stanford University in 1942 he served in the Navy during World War II and was awarded the Bronze Star. He graduated from USC Law School in 1949 and went to work for O'Melveny & Myers after being admitted to the California Bar in 1950.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his stepson, William D. Wallace, and a brother, James Linn Beebe.

A memorial service will be held at 12:30 p.m. Sunday at the First Congregational Church, 540 S. Commonwealth Ave., Los Angeles, 90020.

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