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Owen Eagan Wins West Hartford Probate Judge Primary

Owen Eagan won Tuesday’s Democratic primary for the probate judge position.

Owen P. Eagan. Submitted photo

Owen P. Eagan. Submitted photo

By Ronni Newton

Shortly after the polls closed Tuesday night, Owen Eagan was declared winner of the Democratic primary for probate judge in West Hartford, and although his name will still be on the ballot in November he is the presumptive winner because the Republicans did not nominate a candidate for the position.

Turnout for the primary, held in late summer, was very low with less than 20 percent voter turnout. Only about 3,000 of the approximately 18,000 registered Democrats voted.

The official tally according to Democratic Registrar of Voters Beth Sweeney was 1,929 votes for Eagan to 1,111 votes for rival Michael Croll. Those numbers include absentee ballots.

“I’m thrilled. I feel very blessed and honored,” Eagan said after learning that he had won the primary.

Eagan was exceeding grateful for the support of his family and friends during the campaign. “I could not have done it without them,” he said.

Eagan will maintain his practice with Eagan, Donohue, Van Dyke & Falsey, LLP in West Hartford Center but said that he, and all others in his firm, will drop all probate cases. As time allows, Eagan said he will continue to work on other types of cases as did his predecessors Sydney Elkin and John Berman.

Sydney Elkin has served as West Hartford’s probate judge for about 14 years, but state statute requires him to retire when he turns 70, which is this October. As winner of Tuesday’s primary, Eagan’s name will be on the Nov. 8 ballot in what is technically a special election to fill the vacancy being created by Elkin’s retirement. The remaining term runs through January 2019.

“We worked really hard. The whole campaign worked really hard and I feel so blessed,” Eagan said.

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