As many of you in the legal community are aware, Raynes Lawn Hehmeyer suffered the unimaginable, tragic loss of our dear colleague, friend and family member, Amber Racine. She was a rising star, a young brilliant trailblazer, a servant leader in our legal community and beyond. Her accomplishments were dazzling, and her potential was unlimited. But she was so much more than that to us, her family at RLH. She was our sister, our friend, our confidant. Though one of the younger members of our firm, she brought a wisdom far beyond her years. She was direct yet diplomatic, she was professional yet passionate, she was dignified yet zealous, she was brilliant yet compassionate. She had a smile that lit up the room, and a heart that reached every corner of our office. We often had to share Amber with our legal community and beyond, but she always came “home” to us, her work family. We were so blessed to have her as part of our family, though it was far too brief. We will try to honor her legacy, her spirit, her generosity, her compassion, and her advocacy each day going forward.
Stephen E. Raynes
We are devastated and heartbroken by the passing of our beloved colleague and dear friend. Amber was a gifted trial lawyer and an indomitable force for good, change and kindness. The outpouring over the last few days is a true testament to how deeply she touched so many. She was a leader in the legal community, a champion of countless civic causes and genuinely one of the finest and nicest human beings anywhere. We will miss her infectious smile, keen intellect and warmth, and we pray for her family during this most difficult time.
Some losses cannot be expressed with mere words. This loss cuts too deep but I will do my best.
I had the absolute privilege of knowing Amber Racine for over a decade and a half, from full time paralegal, part-time law student, to law school graduate, to lawyer to absolute change maker both within and outside of the legal profession to the larger Philadelphia community.
Simply put, in so many ways Amber was the daughter I never had and by age she fit neatly between my oldest and youngest sons.
I would start most heart to heart conversations with Amber over the years with the question, “so what’s your plan?”. Watching Amber glide easily in and out of legal, educational, political, governmental and social justice circles was always pure joy for me. It also answered the question, Amber always had a plan and that plan was to make life better for her clients, her friends and family, for people she knew and for people she would never know.
Many folks give me some credit for being Amber’s mentor, and I will gladly accept the fact that I had some role in helping her along the way just as mentors helped me. I was elated when she joined the Raynes Firm, whose founder I greatly respected. That feeling grew stronger when I later joined her at the Raynes Lawn Hehmeyer firm and we had the opportunity to work on behalf of our clients together.
God makes plans for those he loves without consultation with any earthly being. We are all made better that Amber came our way and touched the lives of those we know and those we will never know.
Regina M. Foley
Amber was my partner and colleague but more importantly she was my dear friend. At work she offered me brilliant strategy, passionate advocacy and diligent work; in life, she offered me honest insight, unwavering support and witty conversation. She was the real deal, she had strength and wisdom beyond her years; she was a beautiful and decent human being. She accomplished so much in her short life, but she had so much more to give and do. She was a true light in this world. I will miss her terribly.
Gerald Austin McHugh, U.S. District Judge (formerly with RLH)
Amber exemplified the ideal of the “Citizen Lawyer.” She was a model of civility and professionalism in her practice, and never lost sight of how lawyers can be a powerful force for good in the broader community.