Skip to content

James Joseph Brennan

Click the button below to make a donation in memory of James Joseph Brennan


Published in July 2023

Beloved father, husband, son, uncle, brother-in-law and dear friend to many – James Joseph Brennan passed away on Sunday, July 2, 2023 at the age of 46 from complications caused by ALS. He was at his home in New York City, surrounded by his beloved wife Linda Cho, his brother Andy and children Harry, age 12 and Callie, age 6.

Jim was born on August 10, 1976, just outside Washington, D.C., to Hugh Brennan and the late Mary Brennan. Youngest of four children, Jim is survived by Maryanne Gaffney, Andrew Brennan, Michael Brennan and their respective spouses Charlie Gaffney, Polly Giragosian, Valerie Courtois and his nieces and nephews, Erin, Meaghan, Charlie, Nathan, Cullen, Samara, Mina and Charlotte.

James, more commonly known as Jim or Jimmy (or “J.J.” as his grandfather, the late Supreme Court Justice, William Brennan called him,) grew up in Potomac, MD, and later studied at Trinity College in Hartford, CT. After graduation, he moved to New York City and then Chicago where he studied law at Northwestern University. Jim clerked for the Federal District Court in Scranton, PA for Judge Vanaskie, where he met his future wife, Linda. Jim and Linda fell in love quickly while skiing and rallying on the tennis courts. In 2007, the couple returned to New York City and married on June 19, 2009.

Jim started his career as a legal associate at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison where he practiced commercial litigation. He then transitioned to Wollmuth, Maher & Deutsch as Counsel. Jim had a sharp legal mind, calm demeanor and strong work ethic. He was loved and supported by his colleagues, and appreciated by his clients.

Jim and Linda loved to travel, and after the birth of their son, Harry and daughter, Callie, the young family continued to explore the world. This continued even after the onset of ALS in 2018 and Jim was determined to bring his family to their favorite places right up to the time of his death.

Jim fought this cruel disease with incredible strength and grace. He was determined to stay as long as he could for his family. To his last day, he gave himself selflessly and despite the struggles and limits of the disease, he continued to engage his friends and family meaningfully. Jim shared his love for boardgames, reading and movies with Harry and Callie. He continued to be a supporting husband to Linda. He engaged in long texts with friends and family. Jim enjoyed watching sports, solving NYT crossword puzzles and Wordle with his friends and family.

Jim and the family thanks Jim’s caregivers Carlene and Norda who cared for him with love.

In lieu of flowers please consider donating in Jim’s memory to Compassionate Care ALS at

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Brennan family.