Monday, February 13, 2006

A Northeast Tennessee lawyer's life

From the Maryville paper:

J. Paul Coleman, 87, of Maryville, formerly of Johnson City, passed away on February 11, 2006 at Shannondale of Maryville. The son of William Lewis (Joe) and Eva Lou Coleman, he was born and raised on a small farm near Pocahontas, Tennessee. He graduated from Middleton High School, Class of 1938. A veteran of World War II, he served as an infantry Staff Sargent in General George S. Patton's Third Army and participated in the major battle campaigns of Northern France, the Rhineland and Ardennes. He was awarded the Bronze Star, the Combat Infantry Badge, and the European Theater Medal with Three Bronze Stars. He received the Purple Heart for wounds inflicted during the epic Battle of the Bulge. After the War, the G.I. Bill enabled him to attend and graduate from Cumberland School of Law in 1947. He practiced law in Johnson City for over fifty years, most of which time was spent in partnership with the Law Firm of Herndon, Coleman, Brading & McKee. He forged a professional reputation in his representation of physicians and hospitals in the defense of medical malpractice litigation. He practiced law just as he conducted his personal life... possessed of integrity, intellect and civility. He served as United States Commissioner for the Eastern District of Tennessee (1966-70), and was a member of the Washington County Bar Association (President 1956-57), the Tennessee Bar Association (Vice-President 1965-67, Board of Governors 1962-65), and the Judicial Conference of the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. He was selected to Fellowships in the American College of Trial Lawyers, the American Bar Foundation and the Tennessee Bar Foundation. He was a longtime member of Munsey Memorial United Methodist Church, serving on the Board and as a Sunday School teacher. He was a former President of the Johnson City Lions Club and was a member of the Hurstleigh Club for over 48 years. He was a remarkable man, who remained a gentleman of honor and dignity even unto his passing.

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