James Edward Brydges Jr., one of the longtime leaders of the defense bar in Virginia, died Jan. 18 at his home in Virginia Beach. He was 77.
A native of Lynchburg, Mr. Brydges attended Duke University and earned his law degree from the University of Virginia law school in 1967. Mr. Brydges was a trial lawyer from day one of his career. He started his practice working for his uncle, Richard G. Brydges, later joining another firm. In 1982 he moved to Taylor & Walker, now TaylorWalker, with offices in Virginia Beach and Norfolk; at the time of his death, he was senior litigation partner with TaylorWalker.
He served as president of the Virginia Beach Bar Association in 1985. In 1998-99, he was president of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys. He was a member of the Boyd-Graves Conference and a Fellow of the Virginia Law Foundation (Class of 2001).
From 1976 to 1992, Mr. Brydges served as a substitute judge in Virginia Beach general district court.
He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Esther; a daughter, Jennifer Overbo; a son, Brian Brydges; and four grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Feb. 27 at Galilee Episcopal Church in Virginia Beach.