On Wednesday night, leaders from the Central Florida community gathered at the Orlando country club to roast one of their respected and beloved favorites, Judge Belvin Perry. Perry, who has been active in the community for decades, became nationally known for presiding over the Casey Anthony trial.
The roast-master for the evening was Orlando Sentinel Columnist Scott Maxwell, who led off the event with some jabs of his own.
“It is a pleasure to be here among all of the people I have pissed off over the years. I feel like Donald Trump walking into a mosque.” he began “I like Belvin Perry, over the years he’s helped the poor, the drug dependent, the wrongfully convicted, he’s moved on a to a new role and Morgan and Morgan, I was thinking we raise a toast because that’s what you do everyday at Morgan and Morgan.”
Roasters included Judge Bob Evans, who served with Perry for years, State Attorney Jeff Ashton and WFTV Reporter Shannon Butler.
It was Attorney and Chairman of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority, Frank Kruppenbacher, who would raise the energy in the room and apologized ahead, despite having Perry’s blessing to say anything.
“Who the hell picked a Country Club to roast him? About 50 years ago, a roast would have been a different thing if he were here. I was walking in tonight Dick Batchelor says ‘jeez they’ve got a lot of valets’ I replied ‘It’s Belvin’s family!” he began.
“John Morgan would have been here tonight, but Belvin hasn’t realized John does not fraternize with the help. “They bring four white people up here to roast him. Don’t you have any black friends?” Kruppenbacher set his sights on Ashton before departing saying “Hey Jeff, it you learned anything from him, you probably would have won. Think about it. The whole world hates the lady (Casey Anthony) and you convinces the only group in the world that matters to say ‘not guilty’!
The evening ended on a positive note, that praised Perry’s work. His life-long friend Ron Rogers described growing up in Central Florida with Perry and his path to success.
When the guest of honor took the podium he was gentle with his roasters, and was thankful for being in the presence of his friends.
“When I look out into this room, I see people that have made a difference not only in my life, but in this community.” Perry said “And this community, the community we all love, is better because of you.”