Obituary: John E. Conwell

John E. Conwell, 75
John E. (“Denny”) Conwell, of Boston and Hull, died on July 27 at age 75. 
A graduate of Georgetown University and Suffolk Law School, he served in the U.S. Army, the Registry of Motor Vehicles, the Massachusetts State Police, the Plymouth County District Attorney’s Office, and the law firm of Bulger & Finnerty. For 20 years, he maintained a solo legal practice. 
Denny was an early supporter of the civil rights movement and a firm believer in the Fourth and Sixth Amendments. His business card read: “Tired of pleading guilty?” 
He was always ready for trial in his law practice, which included more than 20 murder trials, and he was willing to represent all comers. His proudest legal accomplishment was a challenge to the Boston Police Department policy of “search on sight” (Commonwealth v. Lamar Phillips, Supreme Judicial Court, 1992).
Denny loved playground basketball (his street name was “Doc”), criminal law, Pall Mall unfiltered, and Barbara. A head injury forced his early retirement, and in recent years he struggled with health issues. He did not go gentle into that good night. 
He is survived by Barbara, his wife of 51 years, and heartbroken pets, Watson and the Skunk. 
Friends are invited to raise a glass in his memory on Tuesday, Aug. 20, 7-9 p.m., at Jo’s Nautical Bar in Hull.