Obituary of Edward James Cameron
Edward James Cameron passed away peacefully at his home on October
19, 2020. Ed was born on November 22, 1953 in Hazel Green, Wisconsin, to Donald
and Camilla Cameron. He was the fifth of eight children. His father was an oil driller, and
the family moved frequently due to his work. They finally settled in Mount Sterling, in
Western Illinois, a tiny town with a population of less than two-thousand people.
Throughout his years at Saint Mary’s Elementary School, Ed served as an
altar boy at Holy Family Catholic Church. In 1972, he went on to graduate from Brown
County High School, where he was on the football and wrestling teams. Even in grade
school and high school, Ed was known not only for his intelligence, but for his fairness
and sense of justice. He would not stand for bullying on the playground or a missed call
in sports, and he was quick to confront any aggressors or argue his position to a coach
or a teacher. His classmates would learn not to argue with Ed because they knew he
had done the research on whatever the topic was, and that he was almost always right.
He had a thirst for knowledge, and would do anything to acquire it, often reading
encyclopedias during recess to maintain a competitive edge. However, Ed was known
to always be a gracious winner, and he also never held a grudge .
Ed went on to graduate from Western Illinois University in 1976, with a
Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and a minor in History. He then left Illinois
for Ann Arbor, Michigan, having been accepted to the highly-ranked University of
Michigan Law School. When he graduated in 1979, he headed to the East Coast after
landing a job at a large and prestigious law firm in Philadelphia. Ed did not enjoy big firm
life, however. He wanted to be in court where the action was, and he wanted to work on
cases that would impact the lives of others.
To that end, in 1981, Ed joined the Philadelphia District Attorney’s Office
as an Assistant District Attorney (ADA) in the Trial Division. In 1986, he was promoted to
the Homicide Unit, where he eventually became Assistant Chief. He remained in that
position until he moved to the Insurance Fraud Unit in the fall of 2018. Ed had the truly
extraordinary distinction of being the longest-tenured Homicide ADA in the Philadelphia
District Attorney’s Office, having served over thirty-two years in that unit.
During that time, Ed brought justice to literally thousands of victims and a
sense of closure to their families. He was an outstanding trial attorney, known for his
integrity, his unrelenting determination, his creativity and ingenuity, his tireless work
ethic and dedication, and his ability to remain calm no matter the circumstances. He
was generous with his knowledge and his time, and he was constantly consulted by
others seeking his highly-valued opinion and advice. His colleagues knew that they
could alway rely on him for anything they needed, including a good laugh, because as
serious as he was, Ed always liked to have fun.
Ed mentored many younger attorneys, and those who were new to the Homicide
Unit, but as one veteran Homicide prosecutor noted, “the longer you were in the
Homicide Unit, the harder it was to find anyone who could help you as the senior
prosecutors would leave the office or retire. However, Ed was always there, willing to
listen, and there was nothing he hadn’t done or hadn’t seen. He was always a great and
valuable sounding board for trial strategy. Whenever he was on trial, I would try to go
and watch him because I always knew I would learn something”.
Ed was a low-profile guy who tried many high-profile cases. Despite his
accomplishments, he always remained humble, and never sought the limelight. His
colleagues note that “no matter his incredible results with his cases, he never talked
about himself. it was never about him; it was about the job. He was respected and
admired by everyone.”
Several months ago, Ed’s long-time boss, former Philadelphia District Attorney
Lynne Abraham, acknowledged the importance of Ed’s work in a letter to him, stating
“You were never vainglorious or prideful. You went about your responsibilities with a
cheerful demeanor, and never failed to help anyone who sought your wise counsel.
Remarkably, you did all this and more for decades; as others came and went, you
stayed true to your calling. For your steadfastness, courage, work ethic, and
professionalism in this long march to justice, I thank you most sincerely for a job very
The only thing that mattered more to Ed than being a prosecutor was his family.
On a winter night in 1983, a visit to the Irish Pub on Walnut Street led Ed to a chance
meeting with Julie Lundberg, his love and true companion. They were married in
September, 1984, and had two children, Mackensie (Mac) and Camilla (Millie). Ed was
a devoted husband and proud father. He loved to do any kind of project with his
children, whether it was making Christmas cookies and (later) beer with them, growing
vegetables in the garden, or teaching them how to fix things around the house. Ed was
very skilled at home repair, and remodeled every room in his Manayunk home on his
own, from floor to ceiling. There was always a weekend project. Ed liked to stay
constantly busy, and when he wasn’t working, he was reading any murder mystery or
spy novel he could get his hands on. He was also an avid runner, and competed in the
Broad Street Run numerous times, as well as 20th Marine Corps Marathon.
An avid outdoorsman, Ed and his family looked forward to their yearly camping
trip to Promised Land State Park. They also loved to spend time at the ocean, with
frequent stays at Julie’s family beach house in Giant’s Neck Beach, Connecticut. He
and Julie enjoyed traveling to various islands, such as St. John, which was a favorite.
Ed also had a fondness for animals, especially dogs, and he treasured his loyal golden
retriever dogs, Bailey and Snowball, who were always by his side.
In addition to his Julie and his children, Ed is survived by his sisters: Christine
Logsdon, of Mt. Sterling, Illinois, and Mary (Rick) Reich, of Versailles, Illinois, and his
brothers Michael (Ann) of Rushville, Illinois and Mitch (Charlotte), of Hersman, Illinois,
as well as many cherished nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his parents,
Donald and Camilla, and his brothers Gary, Benjamin and David. He will also be greatly
missed by his wife Julie’s siblings, Skipper Lundberg, of West Hartford, Connecticut,
Charles (Pam) Lundberg, of Glastonbury, Connecticut, and Kate (Mac) King, of Essex,
Interment will be private. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, a viewing and memorial
service as well as a funeral Mass will be held in Spring of 2021. In lieu of flowers,
please consider a donation to the Glioblastoma Foundation.
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