Attorney placed high value on service, heritage

| Friday, Nov. 9, 2012, 12:01 a.m.

Many people regarded Bob Medonis as a man with a true sense of responsibility.

It showed when he served in the military, taught his children or advised clients as a lawyer.

During the Korean War, Mr. Medonis, a member of the Army ROTC at the University of Pittsburgh, became an armored cavalry commander in the United States.

“My father was proud to have served his country,” said his son, Robert Medonis Jr. of Mt. Lebanon. “In fact, he'd often tell our mother that one of the most important periods in his life, besides his dedication to his family, was serving his country.”

Robert X. Medonis of Mt. Lebanon died on Monday, Nov. 5, 2012, in his home. He was 81.

In 1955, Mr. Medonis received his law degree from Pitt. He earned a master's degree from Duquesne University. He began practicing law with the Allegheny County Public Defender's Office, then joined the staff of the district attorney, where he earned the reputation of being a hard-working man of integrity.

“Dad also maintained law offices in Downtown, Oakmont and Mt. Lebanon,” his son said. “Dad had a great work ethic, which he passed on to my sister, Peg; my brother Mark; and me. And although he kept a busy schedule, he was always there for our family, especially during the years we were in school.”

U.S. Senior District Judge Maurice B. Cohill Jr. recalled Mr. Medonis' reputation. “He was an excellent lawyer and a credit to the Allegheny County Bar Association, where he was a member.”

Mr. Medonis grew up in the South Side, one of four children of Vincent Medonis and his wife, Anastasia Puia Medonis. His father was the organist and choir director for several parishes in the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh.

“Dad never forgot his Lithuanian heritage,” said his son. “He was an active member of the Lithuanian Citizens Society of Western Pennsylvania and very much involved with the Lithuanian Room of Pitt's Nationality Rooms.”

In addition to his son Robert and his wife, Mary Kathleen Castor Medonis, whom he married in 1962, Mr. Medonis is survived by daughter Margaret E. Medonis of Paso Robles, Calif.; son Mark D. Medonis of Allison Park; and three grandchildren.

His siblings, David Medonis, Gwen Medonis and Gloria Freire, preceded him in death.

A blessing service will be held at 9:30 a.m. Friday in Laughlin Memorial Chapel, 222 Washington Road, Mt. Lebanon. Interment with military honors will follow in National Cemetery of the Alleghenies in Cecil.

Jerry Vondas is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-320-7823 or

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