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Obituary: Howard C. McElroy

Abingdon attorney Howard C. McElroy died Jan. 5. He was 76.

Born in Louisiana, Mr. McElroy attended the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, commissioning in the Signal Corps and Military Intelligence after graduation. He served in I-Corps in Vietnam in the early 1970s before spending the remainder of his U.S. Army career in San Diego, California.

After his military service, Mr. McElroy enrolled in Georgetown University Law School, where he worked for the school’s dean while earning his law degree.

Mr. McElroy moved with his family to Abingdon in 1977, where he joined the law firm White Elliott and Bundy. He later became partner as the firm underwent numerous name changes, eventually becoming McElroy and Hodges when the practice closed in December 2016. Mr. McElroy primarily worked in civil litigation during his 40-year career.

Throughout his career, Mr. McElroy was active in Virginia law associations. He served as president of the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys, was an executive committee member of the Virginia Bar Association and a member of the Virginia chapter of the American Board of Trial Advocates. Mr. McElroy was also a fellow of the American Bar Association and the Virginia Law Foundation and was a member of the Judicial Conference of the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

Mr. McElroy was part of the faculty course on professionalism for the Virginia State Bar and was a lecturer for continuing legal education seminars on insurance law.

Throughout his life, Mr. McElroy was an active volunteer in several organizations. He served as president of the Rotary Club of Abingdon, which named an annual award after him and through which he was instrumental in the beginnings of the William King Museum. He also served on the board of directors of Barter Theatre from 1992 until his death.

A founding member of the Abingdon Anglers, Mr. McElroy enjoyed fly fishing and shared his love of fishing with some of his closest friends — his fishing buddies.

Mr. McElroy is survived by his wife of 52 years, Heidi; his children, Karen, Christopher and Andrew; his grandchildren, Caroline and Rhys; and his siblings, Harley, Harriet and Philip.