Steve Barnes of Cellino & Barnes law firm reportedly dies in plane crash

Stephen Barnes, one half of the personal injury attorney duo Cellino & Barnes, reportedly died Friday in a plane crash.

Barnes, a registered pilot, was flying a plane he owned from New Hampshire back to Buffalo, New York, on Friday when the plane crashed outside of the city. Terry Connors, an attorney from Cellino & Barnes, first said the plane was Barnes’. Another source later told The Buffalo News that Barnes was flying the plane, and that he and a female relative onboard died in the crash. Other Buffalo news sources later confirmed Barnes was piloting, and police later confirmed both people on the plane died.

Barnes and Ross Cellino worked together for decades to turn Cellino & Barnes from a western New York-based firm into a massively profitable powerhouse, with its notable ads always featuring the firm’s phone number as a catchy jingle. Barnes and Cellino began the process of breaking up the firm several years ago. New York magazine published a feature on the firm and its recent, still ongoing breakup just weeks ago.

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