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James E. Bradberry — Obituary

Retired U.S. Magistrate Judge James E. Bradberry died July 25. He was 80

A native of Chicago, he received his undergraduate degree from the University of Wisconsin. He earned his law degree from the University of Virginia law school in 1965.

After law school, he served in the U.S. Army Judge Advocate General Corps in New York and Germany, then as a prosecutor in the Newport News Commonwealth Attorney’s office. He was in private practice on the Peninsula until 1991, when he was appointed a U.S. Magistrate Judge for the Eastern District of Virginia, serving in Newport News and Norfolk.

According to a local press report, Judge Bradberry was the last federal judge based primarily in Newport News. He sat at the historic federal courthouse on the second floor of a 1940s-era post office building that closed in 2002.

He retired in 2010. He traveled with family and friends in his retirement, including several trips to Ireland.

Judge Bradberry was a long-serving member of St. George’s Episcopal Church in Newport News, where he served on the vestry, including several terms as warden, and as a lay reader. He was active in many ministries. He helped to organize and support Camp Chanco in Surry; he was one of the founders of and longtime worker with Camp Wakonda, a summer camp for children and families affected by HIV/AIDS.

He was predeceased by his wife of 53 years, Elaine. Survivors include his two children and their families: son Sean, Darlene, Ben and Catherine; and daughter Casey, Joey, Austin and Hannah.