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G. Ernest Tidwell

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G. Ernest Tidwell Obituary

Family-Placed Death Notice

TIDWELL, G. Ernest JUDGE G. ERNEST TIDWELL On August 4, 2011, Atlanta resident U.S. Senior District Judge G. Ernest Tidwell died of natural causes on Hilton Head Island, SC. Judge Tidwell was born on August 1, 1931 and lived his entire life in Atlanta. He grew up in Morningside, graduated from Grady High School in 1949 and earned an LL.B. from Emory University School of Law in 1954. He was in private practice from 1954 to 1966, and then worked as Associate General Counsel for the State Bar of Georgia and Executive Assistant Attorney General for the State of Georgia. He first became a judge in 1968, sitting on the Civil Court of Fulton County. In 1971, he was appointed by Gov. Jimmy Carter to the Superior Court of Fulton County, and he won re-election in 1976. In 1979, he was appointed by President Carter to serve as a federal judge on the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia. Judge Tidwell served on the federal bench for over 32 years, including three years as Chief Judge from 1996-1999. Judge Tidwell was an enthusiastic mentor to countless attorneys who served as judicial clerks and to other younger judges. He prided himself on conducting an efficient docket, treating colleagues and litigants fairly and applying the law with the highest level of integrity. Judge Tidwell's devotion to the bench was unsurpassed, but he also enjoyed leisure activities such as playing tennis, hunting, reading and relaxing at the beach. He was able to spend his last week at a family reunion vacation at the beach, and his family is grateful to have shared this special time with him, celebrating both his 80th birthday and his 50th wedding anniversary. Judge Tidwell is survived by his wife Carol, son Tom and his wife Amy, all of Atlanta; his daughter Linda Ochsenmeier and her husband Erwin of Brussels, Belgium; his son David from Jacksonville, FL; his brother Charles Tidwell of Atlanta, and four grandchildren. Judge Tidwell lived a long and full life. With the hope of helping others enjoy long lives, the family requests that in lieu of flowers donations be made to The Press On to CURE Childhood Cancer Fund ( or St. Jude Children's Research Hospital ( A memorial service will be held on Friday, August 12, 2011 at 9:30 a.m. at H.M. Patterson & Son, 1020 Spring St., Atlanta, GA 30309. The family with receive friends for a short period following the service at Patterson's. A private inurnment will follow.
Published in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Aug. 8, 2011
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