In Memory of William H. "Bill" Russell

Obituary for William H. Russell

William Henry “Bill” Russell, age 75, of Philadelphia, Tennessee, passed away on July 10, 2014 surrounded by family.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Dr. Harrell McTeer Russell and Frankie Thomas Russell. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Mary Ann Monk Russell; his sons, William Andrew Russell and Keith McTeer Russell; Keith’s wife, Audrey Hamm Russell, and Bill's grandson, Reece Matthew McTeer Russell. Also, surviving is Bill’s sister, Martha Russell Johnson and her husband, Lawrence Johnson (Loudon); his nephew, Russell Johnson and his wife, Erin Johnson (Loudon), and nieces, Terry Johnson Sharpe and her husband, Jerry Sharpe (Columbus, MS) and Laura Johnson Rosenbaum and her husband, Dan Rosenbaum (Plymouth, MN); two grandnieces, Kristy Sharpe Boyd (Anthem, AZ) and Emory Johnson (Loudon) and a grandnephew, Benjamin Sharpe (Starkville, MS), as well as many cousins including, Loraine Russell McConkey of Lenoir City.

Bill was the former Loudon County General Sessions Judge having been elected in 1998, and re-elected in 2006, before retiring in 2010 to spend more time at his home with family and pursuing some of his favorite hobbies: photography, family and local history, gardening, fishing and community projects. He was a member of Philadelphia United Methodist Church, a Mason at Tennessee Lodge #204 (Loudon) and a life-long Republican. Born at Keen Mountain, Virginia where his father was a Methodist minister, Bill and his sister, Martha, also lived in Newport, Tennessee and Narrows, Radford and Tazewell, Virginia. Bill graduated from Tazewell High School in 1958. He then served in the US Marine Corps for four years then went on to receive his bachelor's degree at East Tennessee State University and his law degree from the University of Tennessee. Bill started practicing law in Loudon County and soon went to Nashville with the election of Republican Governor Winfield Dunn to serve as his Assistant Commissioner of Conservation and then as his Administrative Assistant. In 1974 he returned to Loudon County and was elected as County Judge serving until 1982. While maintaining an active law practice through the 1980s, Bill established Southeastern Title & Abstract Company in Loudon in 1985 and then, in 1990, became an assistant in the 9th District Attorney's Office where he remained until he was elected Loudon County General Sessions Court Judge in 1998.

Throughout his successful career as a public servant and lawyer, Bill established and maintained many relationships and friendships with people that he came into contact with in politics, the legal profession, the court system and the community. After retiring as judge in 2010, Bill was inducted into the Tazewell High School Hall of Fame.

Judge Bill was a mentor to many attorneys and political candidates. He maintained a strong local political influence from his days in Nashville continuing throughout and after his career as a judge and was always known as “Judge Bill” by those that knew him best.

The family of Bill Russell will be having a private graveside ceremony on Tuesday, July 15th at 11:00 am at Loudon County Memorial Gardens in Lenoir City.

Honorary pall bearers at the private graveside service will be: Tim Brewster, Arby Harrison, Larry Jameson, Chip Miller, Chris Miller, and Clayton Pangle.

A US Marine Corps Color Guard from Camp Lejuene will act as pall bearers and will conduct a military service with 21-gun salute at this private ceremony. There will be a Mason ceremony conducted in conjunction with this service as well.

A Celebration of Life service will be held at Central United Methodist Church in Lenoir City on Tuesday, July 22nd at 7:00 pm to which family, friends and members of the public are invited to attend.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made in Bill Russell's memory to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund. Loudon Funeral Home in charge of arrangements