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Local attorney and Mtn. City icon, Tom Grayson, dead at 85

Thomas R. “Tom” Grayson, 85, a local attorney and long-time familiar face in Mountain City, passed away Saturday, August 7, 2010 at Watauga Medical Center.
TomGrayson opened his private law practice in Mountain City in 1952, fresh out of law school. Some 58 years later, Grayson still made his way to the same office on Main Street until a few short weeks before his death.
Although his law partners have handled all court cases for a few years now, Grayson still assisted clients in various ways such as preparing wills, deeds, and powers-of-attorney. In an interview with The Tomahawk in 2008 he said he had no time for the “R” word. “I really enjoy what I’m doing, which is why I’m still working and not retiring,” Grayson said. “I actually like coming into the office and being able to work.”
During his extensive practice Grayson served in many community legal capacities including local veteran’s service officer. He also served as the county attorney for many years, during the time when the Forge Creek Highway was acquired and built, the relocation of new Highway 421 to Boone, and construction of the present Johnson County Courthouse before its new addition.
Grayson’s practice grew from a general small town practice to attainment of general counsel for Farmers State Bank, general counsel for Mountain Electric Cooperative for many years, local counsel for Tennessee Farmers Mutual Insurance Company, Farm Bureau, and local counsel for several insurance carriers which he represented in conjunction with Leco Manufacturing, Burlington Industries, Melville or Blue Ridge Shoe, State Automobile Insurance Company, Southern Glove Manufacturing Company, just to name a few.
“As county attorney and attorney for the Industrial Board, Tom was very instrumental behind the scenes in the location of most, if not all of the early industries in the county,” said George Wright, his law partner for many years, “including Leco Manufacturing, Burlington Industries, Blue Ridge Shoe Co., Greensboro Mfg., the former Glove Plant, and Iron Mountain Stoneware where he was also a member of the Board of Directors.”
A full obituary is in today’s paper on page B-4.

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