Maryland Carey Law mourns the loss of Prof. Oscar S. Gray

Dean Donald Tobin and the entire Maryland Carey Law community are deeply saddened by the Oct. 3 passing of Oscar S. Gray, Jacob A. France Professor Emeritus of Torts.

“Oscar was an extremely impressive and brilliant person,” said Dean Tobin, “who had a huge impact on Maryland Carey Law and U.S. tort law.”

Gray was one of the nation’s preeminent tort scholars, joining the law school faculty in 1971, and actively teaching until 1996. He published the second and third editions of the definitive six-volume treatise on tort law, Harper, James and Gray on Torts, and was a co-editor of the influential torts casebook, Cases and Materials on Torts. During the mid-1990s, he served as chair of the AALS Section on Tort and Compensation Systems. In 2010, Gray received the William L. Prosser Award for lifetime service from the section.

A Maryland native, Gray graduated from Yale Law School in 1951, after which he was an attorney-adviser at the Legal Adviser’s Office of the U.S. Department of State. From 1957 until 1971, he was vice president and director of a nuclear materials startup company, and served as special counsel to the President’s Task Force on Communications Policy, and acting director of the Office of Environmental Impact for the U.S. Department of Transportation.  

Gray was a huge fan of baseball and his Baltimore Orioles, “scoring” each game he attended with pencil and paper. He also enjoyed chamber music and opera, and was a serious wine collector. 

In 2018, Gray celebrated 50 years of marriage with Dr. Sheila Hafter Gray, a leader in the psychoanalytic education and accreditation community. 

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