Super Senior: Peter Langrock

Published: Sep. 7, 2023 at 4:03 PM EDT
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MIDDLEBURY, Vt. (WCAX) - Peter Langrock loves his land and his animals -- 40 sheep, an old mare, and a barn cat -- on the farm he shares with his wife Joann in Salisbury.

“Every day there’s something that happens on the farm,” Langrock said.

He bought the 300-acre farm in the early 60′s. It takes a drive to show it all. “I really don’t feel that I own it, I feel that I’m the steward. My job is that I’ve had the privilege to live on it during my lifetime,” Langrock said.

Eighty-five years of living -- most of it in Vermont. As a child, Langrock’s dad helped manage a hotel on Lake Dunmore. Peter tagged along spending summers hunting and fishing, before heading back to Queens, New York, when the leaves changed color. “I always felt part of the community,” he said.

But he left both Vermont and New York for the Windy City at 19 when he started law school.

Reporter Joe Carroll: You have to have some smarts to get into the University of Chicago, right.

Peter Langrock: Well, yeah. Nobody ever said I was a dullard.

Reporter Joe Carroll: Do you have an ego?

Peter Langrock:: Of course, of course. I think I’m a decent person, pretty damn good lawyer, and I love what I do.

His love of Vermont beckoned him back. Langrock ran for Addison County State’s Attorney. He and Joann went door to door asking for support. And at just 22, he won.

Reporter Joe Carroll: Had there ever been a state’s attorney that was that young?

Peter Langrock: I don’t know anybody that was younger.

It would be the start of a brilliant career. He’s argued twice at the highest court in the land -- the U.S Supreme Court -- sometimes struggling to get the words out. “It’s not really stuttering, it’s cluttering. I try to put too many words together too fast and it sometimes comes out with hesitation and it sounds like stuttering,” Langrock said.

The couple met at the nearby Waybury Inn when Joann was studying at Middlebury College. “He asked if he could drive me home. I said no. I come home with the people I came, but he got my phone number and we dated that summer,” Joann said.

“And then she told me she was in love with somebody else, never see me again, went off to Paris. But I took that as a challenge, sent her a bon voyage card and said, ‘Je t’aime maintenant et toujours.’ I love you now and forever -- translates into a 63-year-old marriage,” Langrock said.

Reporter Joe Carroll: He charmed you.

Joann: He was delightful, yes.

The days in the office are far from over. He’s at the office in Middlebury five days a week. “I got an argument next week in the Vermont Supreme Court, another one coming up this fall on some major cases,” he said.

Reporter Joe Carroll: How long do you expect to be coming in the office like this?

Peter Langrock: Until the Grim Reaper says no more. No, that’s not quite fair. As long as I feel my cognitive abilities are equal to the task, I’ll do that... And just be able to do, at this stage in my life, it’s a wonderful blessing.