This campaign was started by friends from Seyfarth Shaw and the New City Church in Los Angeles in loving memory of Duwayne Carr and for the benefit of his family. Duwayne was an amazing father, husband, son, brother, friend, lawyer and colleague. Although his time on this earth ended too soon, the flame of his spirit burns bright in all of those whose lives he has touched.
We want to help the Carr Family during this time of need. Duwayne leaves a loving wife, Dannielle and his daughters Eva and Amelia who was born today, April 19, 2019.
Duwayne graduated with a BA from the University of the West Indies in 2001. Following college he taught Spanish at his former high school in Jamaica for four years, and headed the Spanish Department for most of his tenure. It was during this time that Duwayne met and fell in love with Dannielle. They married in 2008 following their move to Pasadena, California where Duwayne pursued and received Master’s Degree in Divinity from the Fuller Theological Seminary. While at the Seminary, Duwayne decided to follow his dream of becoming a lawyer. In 2010, however, he received the tragic news that he had stage four cancer. Although he was told at the time that he may only have two years left to live, he did not let that stop him from pursuing his dreams and living the fullest life possible.
Duwayne enrolled at UCLA Law School and began legal studies while at the same time undergoing cancer treatment. Although Duwayne kept his condition quiet from most people, he did not let it slow him down from not only finishing but excelling in law school. He became a regional director of the Black Law Students Association, Editor-in-Chief of the National Black Law Journal and served as a Judicial Extern for the Honorable S. James Otero of the United States District Court for the Central District of California. He spent his summer between second and third year of law school working as a Summer Fellow in the Los Angeles offices of Seyfarth Shaw. He impressed everyone he worked with and received an offer for a position as an attorney in the Firm’s Labor and Employment Department following his graduation.
While studying for the bar exam, Duwayne and Dannielle were blessed with the birth of their first child Eva. Duwayne and Dannielle decided to move their new family to San Francisco and Duwayne began work as an attorney in Seyfarth’s San Francisco office.
In 2015, Duwayne moved back to the Los Angeles and re-joined the Downtown office so that he could focus on additional treatment and be closer to his extended family. Despite the difficulty and challenges of quietly undergoing aggressive cancer treatment, Duwayne loved being a lawyer and helping people. He not only provided excellent legal work for many clients, he also gave back to the community through his pro bono work. He has represented individuals seeking asylum, and foster care parents seeking retroactive and prospective funding from the state to care for their foster children. In recognition of his years of pro bono service, in 2017, Duwayne and some of his colleagues were selected by the firm as 2017 Pro Bono Team of the Year for their years-long representation of a former inmate at Pelican Bay State Prison for discrimination in medical treatment that resulted in one of the largest settlements for an inmate in state history. In addition, he served on the Board of Chatsworth Hills Academy, Inc and on the Leadership Team (a defacto Elder Board) of his local church, New City Church of Los Angeles.
Duwayne will be remembered not only for the love and passion he brought to the practice of law, but for the many lives he positively impacted along the way. Everyone knew Duwayne for his infectious laugh, kind spirit, and passion for the practice of law, but not everyone knew that during all of his many accomplishments he was also courageously battling cancer. And that is the way Duwayne wanted it. He did not complain or want people to feel bad for his situation, only to live as full and complete a life as he could and to make a difference with the time he had. And he clearly did.
Heartbreakingly, Duwayne lost his valiant fight with cancer this week, just days before the birth of his second child Amelia. He will be greatly missed, but never forgotten. His love and spirit will live on in all who knew him. Our prayers and thoughts go out to Duwayne’s family.