Legal icon dies at 91

Published 11:25 pm Monday, June 22, 2009

Longtime Clanton attorney and World War II veteran Morgan Reynolds died at the age of 91 Sunday.

Reynolds practiced with his father, Grady Reynolds, and uncle, Omar Reynolds, at Reynolds & Reynolds law firm and served as the city of Clanton’s attorney for about 50 years from 1950-2000.

“My opinion is you wouldn’t find a better person, neighbor or friend,” said Clanton Mayor Billy Joe Driver, who knew Reynolds for about 60 years. “If he had anything you needed, you could have it or he would let you borrow it.”

Driver lives just two houses away from the Reynolds family. The two would frequently talk and reminisce about days gone by.

“He knew a lot of the history of Clanton,” Driver said.

Reynolds came from a long line of active, prominent people in the community. He was the grandson of L.H. Reynolds, probate judge of Chilton County; and of Sheriff John Morgan, who served the county as early as 1901.

Morgan Reynolds earned his undergraduate degree in business from the University of Alabama in 1941 and went on to complete law school in 1948.

He also was a combat veteran of World War II, having attained the ranking of lieutenant commander in the U.S. Navy. Reynolds served aboard the USS Astoria, which was sunk in the Pacific in 1942 by the Japanese.

“He was just a fine man in every regard,” current Clanton attorney John Hollis Jackson said. “He was a patriot in service to his country, he was a lawyer who served his profession well for over 50 years, and he was a gentleman in every sense of the word.”

Reynolds also served as secretary of the county hospital board from 1958-2005, as chairman of the ABC Board, and on the Alabama Boys and Girls Ranch Board of Directors.

Reynolds leaves behind his wife, Barbara McGowin Reynolds, two sons and two grandchildren.

Graveside services were held Monday at Martin Memorial Cemetery.