LaFayette Breland Hilburn
1941 - 2021
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LaFayette Breland Hilburn

Jackson - LaFayette Breland Hilburn passed away at the University of Mississippi Medical Center on April 5, 2021, surrounded by his family.

Hilburn was born in Raleigh, North Carolina in 1941 to Lafayette Bowman Hilburn and Mary Jane Hilburn (Breland), but moved to Jackson as a young child. After graduating from Murrah High School, he completed his undergraduate degree at Mississippi State University. He then earned his Juris Doctor from the Univeristy of Mississippi School of Law.

He began his judicial career in 1972 as a Municipal Court Judge and was appointed to the position of County Judge in 1978. He was subsequently elected to the circuit court and served as a Seventh District Circuit Judge from 1981 through 2002, retiring from elected office as senior circuit judge. He then served by special appointment of the Supreme Court to assist in hearing cases in Hinds County, ultimately serving more than 40 combined years on the bench.

For over 20 years, he spent his weekends in New Orleans where he made many friends over a shared passion for playing pool. He was also a skilled acoustic guitar player, an avid chef, a college football fanatic and a lover of classic movies.

He is survived by his wife, JoAnn Chesnut; his three children, Judson Carter Hilburn, Kathryn Breland Hilburn and John Holmes Hilburn; two step sons, William Mancil Dearman and Russell Earl Dearman; and two step grandchildren.

A private ceremony honoring his life will be held later this week.

To Plant Memorial Trees in memory, please visit our Sympathy Store.
Published in Clarion Ledger on Apr. 7, 2021.
No memorial events are currently scheduled. To offer your sympathy during this difficult time, you can now have memorial trees planted in a National Forest in memory of your loved one.
Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by Sebrell Funeral Home
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7 entries
April 11, 2021
Dear JoAnn,
We are heartbroken. We will miss LB so much. He was such a wonderful person. I'll never forget, and will always appreciate, how he helped us. We had so many fun times with y'all at Fahy's.
We love you,
Terry & Chip
Chip and Terry Keister
April 11, 2021
Breeland married my high school sweetheart and they raised three amazing children. We saw each other on occasion and he always was someone who livened up a party. He made you proud to know him as a friend. Keep the music playing good friend and we will all miss ya.
Jim Lowe
April 8, 2021
Judge Hilburn was always kind and considerate of everyone in his court, jurors, lawyers, court reporters and the deputy sheriffs assigned to his court. He was a pleasure to try a case before and he was always evenhanded with all, even the convicted criminals whom he had to sentence. We will miss him. He made Hinds County and the world a better place.
Jim Nobles
April 8, 2021
Breland was a childhood friend living in the Hanging Moss Road area. We were in the same Cub Scout Den lead by my mother. We used to play Army games. His dad coached our little league baseball team and we did well. We reunited at the Murrah 60 year reunion and he asked us to come visit them in New Orleans. Rest In Peace.
Bill Baker
April 7, 2021
Aubrey and I are heartbroken to lose such a great friend. May God bless all of your family and give you peace.
Joy Nichols
April 7, 2021
Breland was a good man and a good lawyer and judge. He knew the law and applied it fairly, without regard to who appeared before him. He helped me with my first criminal case when we were both young, and thanks to him, the client was acquitted, and the family ever after thought I was the best lawyer in the state.
Zeke Downey
April 7, 2021
Breland was a true friend as well as my brilliant legal mind I would often defer to for advice. He always told me the truth. I will miss his funny, dry sense of humor, his quirks that others would let go unnoticed and his quiet, but always observing demeanor he portrayed. We will one another in the next life, probably sooner than we think. Rest peacefully and watch over us until we meet again!
Suzanne Boyster
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