SAN FRANCISCO (KTVU) - San Francisco said it's final farewell to Public Defender Jeff Adachi. Adachi died unexpectedly February 22.
The city of San Francisco paused to remembered Public Defender Jeff Adachi his brother said his famly is greiving his sudden and unexpected loss.
"I come here before you today, I think like all of you, with a heavy heart, and just profound sadness." said Stan Adachi.
Adachi was found in North Beach apartment suffering an apparent heart attack last month. His wife and daughter appeared publicly for the first time since his death, seated across the aisle at the memorial service from the mayor.
London Breed said she first met Adachi as a teenager when he was a young defense attorney coming to the home of a freind accused of a crime. The mayor said she will remember his commitment to justice.
"Anytime I needed help, whether I had a family member or friend in trouble Jeff was always the person I'd call,' said Mayor Breed.
Chief attorney for the Public Defender's Office, Matt Gonzalez, said Adachi was at times reviled for defending those accused of terrible crimes saying Adachi recognized the humanity in everyone.
"Most people want to measure the accused at their worst moment. But, Jeff wanted to measure people by their potential," said Gonzalez.
Rudi Corpuz from the anti-violence group United Playaz remembered a man of principal.
"Jeff was about the people! He was a fierce fighter! Jeff fought for the have-nots. Jeff fought for the people, man, who can't stand up straight. Jeff fought for the people people wouldn't stand up for," said Corpuz.
Stan Adachi said while to many he was an icon he will remember Jeff Adachi as a son, a husband and father, and always as his brother. "He loved life completely and lived it intensely," said Stan Adachi.
Going forward, Mayor Breed will appoint someone to serve in his place until November, when the city of San Francisco will elect the next Public Defender.