NEWPORT BEACH — A function this week in the Balboa Pavilion's Harborside Ballroom honored the late Robert Gardner, a colorful Orange County Superior Court judge who enjoyed bodysurfing and had a reputation for colorful witticisms and well-written court decisions.
Father of Councilwoman Nancy Gardner, the judge died in August 2005 at the age of 93.
"I think we should honor him as best we can by starting to record history as he did," said Gordy Grundy, director of the Newport Beach Historical Society. "He should be an example to us all when it comes to having some sort of an historical effect on this area."
But his impact on the community clearly remained five years later as some 150 people gathered at a Historical Society event honoring his memory.
Also recalled was one of his more famous observations — a wife is not like a breeding cow that you can "put out to pasture" once she grows old and bears children.
In 1992, the judge wrote a book, "Bawdy Balboa," in which he devoted chapters to Newport Beach and the particulars of his life as a judge.