A well-regarded former federal judge who was born and raised in the Aroostook County town of Limestone has died at the age of 84.

Conrad Keefe Cyr died Thursday, according to his obituary, which was posted on the Brookings-Smith Funeral Home website.

“Judge Conrad Cyr was an extraordinarily well-regarded, fair-minded jurist who demonstrated his love and respect for the rule of law throughout his decades of distinguished service. He also never forgot his Aroostook County roots,” U.S. Sen. Susan Collins said Sunday in a statement issued by her office.

“His passing is a loss to his family and friends, the state of Maine, and all who had the pleasure of knowing him,” added Collins, who grew up in the Aroostook County city of Caribou.

After graduating from Limestone High School in 1949, Cyr obtained his undergraduate degree from the College of the Holy Cross in 1953. In 1956, he earned his law degree from Yale University. He practiced law in Limestone and Bangor for a number of years before he was appointed assistant U.S. attorney in 1959.

In the early 1960s, Cyr began a highly successful career in the federal judiciary. He served as a federal bankruptcy/referee judge, playing a prominent role in the effort to rewrite the federal bankruptcy code. He also founded and became editor-in-chief of the American Bankruptcy Law Journal.


President Ronald Reagan nominated Cyr to serve as a U.S. District judge in Bangor in 1981. Cyr served in that role until 1989, when President George H.W. Bush appointed him to a position on the 1st U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston.

The then-chief justice of the United States, William Rehnquist, also appointed Cyr to serve on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court in Washington, D.C., from 1987 to 1994.

Cyr is survived by his wife, Diana Sanborn Cyr, of Hampton, New Hampshire; two sons, Keefe Cyr and Jeffrey Cyr, both of Winterport; three brothers; and several grandchildren, nephews and nieces.

According to his obituary, visiting hours will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 2, from 4-7 p.m. at the Brookings-Smith Funeral Home in Bangor. A second visitation will be held Wednesday, Aug. 3, at the Giberson-Dorsey Funeral Home in Fort Fairfield from 4-7 p.m.

Funeral services will be held Thursday at 11 a.m. in the St. Louis Church on Main Street in Limestone.

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