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Lawyer Laid Off at Skadden After Surviving Hudson River Landing

Posted Apr 17, 2009 10:01 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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Lawyer Frank Scudere considers himself lucky to be alive, but his luck ran out soon after surviving the Hudson River landing of US Airways Flight 1549.

Scudere’s father died less than a week later, and Scudere’s law firm job was gone about two months after the water landing, according to msnbc.com. Scudere was a staff lawyer at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom who worked in New York City on weekdays and commuted home on weekends to Fort Mill, S.C., where his wife and two young daughters lived.

Scudere was originally slated to be laid off Jan. 16, the day after he survived the emergency landing, the story says. Scudere, 48, was called into a meeting in a conference room that day and told he was on the layoff list, but he wouldn’t be let go—at least not yet. Skadden was eliminating nearly all of its staff lawyers—about 50 people in all—along with some support staffers.

On March 26, Scudere finally got the bad news that his job was eliminated. “I feel displaced,” he told msnbc.com. “Who am I? My identity as an attorney—that's gone."

Still, Scudere is philosophical about his situation. "I don't feel sorry for myself," he told msnbc.com. "It just shows the randomness of life, and the inevitability of loss. You can lose, and yet you can still be preserved. I lost my job, and yet I have my life."

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