Will you vote today?
- yes (86%, 6 Votes)
- no (14%, 1 Votes)
Total Voters: 7
By staff writer
The Republicans’ annual Lincoln Day Banquet on Saturday night was a time to pay tribute to Judge John B. Berkemeyer of Hermann, who is winding up 40 years either prosecuting or hearing cases.
According to state law, a judge must retire at age 70. Berkemeyer will turn 70 on March 17, but like the late Judge Randolph E. Puchta of Hermann, the man he replaced, he won’t slow down.
Berkemeyer said Saturday he has agreed to become a senior judge, and will hear cases in various counties of Missouri.
Berkemeyer was only slightly “roasted” Saturday night with Vernon Kohlbusch’s rendition of “Big Bad John” at the Hermann United Methodist Church. Kohlbusch asked the audience to chime in when it was time for the words, “Big, Bad John.”
During his turn at the podium Saturday night, Berkemeyer paid tribute to the citizens who serve on juries, saying they perform a “great service” to the judicial system. “They accept a duty that is very important,” he said.
Berkemeyer, a 1962 graduate of Hermann High School, obtained his undergraduate degrees at St. Louis College of Pharmacy and the University of Missouri. He attended law school at the University of Missouri in Columbia, an obtained a Juris Doctor of Law from George Washington University.
Since 1998, he has been judge in the Gasconade County Circuit Court, Division I-IV of the state of Missouri. Prior to that he had been prosecuting attorney for 25 years.
Judge Berkemeyer and his wife, Sue, reside in rural Hermann. He served in the U.S. Army from 1969-1971.