John F. Sutton

SAN ANGELO John F. Sutton Jr., aged 95, died of old age on April 19, 2013, in the San Angelo Community Hospital. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, April 27, 2013, at First Presbyterian Church, with arrangements by Johnson Funeral Home. Graveside services will follow in Fairmount Cemetery. There will be visitation from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, April 26, at Johnson Funeral Home. Honorary pallbearers for the service will be Jimi Webb of Rosenberg, Texas, David Anderson of Austin, Texas, Daryle and Cindy McGinnis of Bedford, Texas, Melba Cox of San Angelo, Texas and Steve Stephens of San Angelo, Texas. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to First Presbyterian Church of San Angelo, the San Angelo Area Foundation, or to a . John was born in Alpine, Texas on Jan. 26, 1918, to John F. Sutton and Pauline Irene Sutton. The family soon moved to San Angelo, Texas, where John attended all school grades through graduation from the San Angelo High School in 1936. In high school, he flunked Latin, and to make up the credits he studied Vocational Agriculture, in which he excelled. John's father, while Judge of the 51st District Count, also operated a 10-section ranch in South Texas until it was lost by foreclosure in the 1930s depression. Later his father had a small ranch in Tom Green County. John thoroughly enjoyed working on the ranches, and particular enjoyed the several horses. This lasted until he entered the University of Texas at Austin in 1936. John's love for agriculture was revived while he was a professor in Austin. He bought a small stock farm south of Austin, where he raised Black Angus cattle and maintained a couple of horses. In 1941, he received the LL.B degree with honors from the law school. As a law student, John was a Quizmaster and a member of the Law Review, Phi Delta Phi, and the Order of the Coif. John served as an editor of the Law Review. While in law school, John married his law school classmate and the love of his life, Nancy Ewing of Donna, Texas on June 1, 1940. They were married for 72 years. John practiced law in San Antonio until he became a Special Agent of the Federal Bureau of Investigation at the start of World War II. As a Special Agent, he was assigned to many roles in many places in the United States. Following WWII and during the Korean War, John was a 1st Lt., JAGC, in the U. S. Army Reserves. As a reserve officer, he prosecuted two military court martials during tours of duty at Fort Sam in San Antonio. John practiced law in San Angelo from 1950 until September, 1957. During this time he practiced with his father, retired Judge J. F. Sutton, and with his wife, Nancy Ewing Sutton. John last practiced with the firm of Sutton, Steib and Barr. In 1957, he was appointed as a tenured full Professor in the University of Texas School of Law, even though he had never taught law and did not have an undergraduate degree. John taught at the law school for 46 years or until he retired in 2003 at age 85. During that time, he was the co-author of two editions of Cases & Materials on Professional Responsibility and co-author of several editions of McCormick, Elliott & Sutton, Cases and Materials on Evidence. John thoroughly enjoyed writing and also wrote several law review articles. He received the teaching excellence award early in his teaching career. Professor Sutton also taught at North Carolina, U.C.L.A, Tennessee, Texas Tech, and South Texas School of Law. During 1965 to 1970, John was the originating draftsman, working with an ABA Committee, in writing the American Bar Association of the ABA Code of Professional Responsibility, which replaced the ABA's antiquated 1908 Canons of Ethics. Eight or ten years later, he was a consultant to the ABA Commission on Evaluation of Professional Standards that was drafting the Model Rules of Professional Conduct, which replaced the Code of Professional Responsibility. Later, he served two terms on the ABA Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Responsibility, which interprets those rules for lawyers. In 1977, he was the Evidence Advisor to the joint committee of the Texas House and Senate during its hearing of the Address regarding Texas Supreme Court Justice Don Yarbrough. John was appointed as the Dean of the law school on Sept. 1, 1979. He served as Dean until Aug 31, 1984. Dean Sutton was proud of the accomplishments of the law school during his tenure as Dean. As Dean, he solved some but not all of the school's financial problems. He recognized that the history of our dollar is that it constantly loses value or purchasing power, indicating that the financial problems of the law school likely will continue. Professor Sutton was a Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, and a Life Member of the Texas Bar Foundation. In addition, the Law School Alumni Association awarded him its Outstanding Alumnus Award. In 1992, the Texas Law Review Association established the John F. Sutton Jr. Endowed Presidential Scholarship in Law in his honor. On John's 90th birthday, John was honored by the establishment of the Dean John F. Sutton Jr. Chair in Lawyering and the Legal Process. The chair was established by his former student, Mark Wawro, and Wawro's spouse, Melania Gray. John always was an active member of the State Bar of Texas. In 1995, he received the Texas Bar Foundation's "Outstanding Fifty Year Lawyer Award." John served as a member of the State Bar of Texas Professional Ethics Committee for many years including having served several times as Chairman. This involvement in professional ethics for the legal profession continued for most of his life. When John was 90 years old, he was appointed by the State Bar President to a three-year term on the State Bar's Standing Committee on Disciplinary Rules of Professional Conduct. John and Nancy loved to travel. They visited every state in the United States of America. John long remembered the vicious, stinging mosquitoes at the Big Pipe Line in Alaska. Their foreign visitations included Argentina, Brazil, Senegal, Medeira, Scotland, France, Switzerland, and other countries in Africa and Europe. They toured Italy with other family members and spent time in Spain with friends. In July, 1971, John was among a small group of American lawyers who upon invitation attended the Lord Chancellor's Reception in the Palace of Westminster in London and an afternoon garden party in the Gardens of Buckingham Palace, where John met the Queen. John was survived by his wife, Nancy Ewing Sutton of San Angelo; and by two children, his daughter, Nancy Joan Sutton Parr and husband Dr. Tom Parr of Sugar Land, Texas; and his son, Judge John Ewing Sutton and wife Judy Harris Sutton of San Angelo. He also is survived by a sister, Dorothy Galgowski and husband Vic Galgowski of Farmington, Conn.; and four grandchildren, Robert Parr and wife Michelle of Little Rock, Ark., Stephen Parr and wife Wendy of Shreveport, La., Brandon Ducote and wife Kathy of Wimberly, Texas, and Joshua Ewing Sutton and wife Eduarda Pinez Sutton of Houston. He was survived by seven great-grandchildren, Bailey Parr, Julia Parr of Shreveport, La., Alma Marie Sutton, John Michael Sutton, Louis Gabriel Sutton of Houston, Texas, and Alan Justin Ducote and Savannah Nicole Ducote of Wimberly, Texas. Other survivors include numerous nieces and nephews. The family would like to give thanks to Dr. Michael Blanc, Dr. John T. Granaghan and Dr. Ned Stein. The family would also like to thank Anita Salinas, a longtime trusted friend and helper.

Funeral Home

Johnson's Funeral Home
435 West Beauregard San Angelo, TX 76903
(325) 655-3113

Published in GoSanAngelo from Apr. 21 to Apr. 24, 2013