Thomas Hal CLARKE
1914 - 2015
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CLARKE, Thomas Hal Thomas Hal Clarke, native Atlantan, was born on August 10, 1914 and died November 1, 2015, the third son and sixth child of Mary Cox DeSaussure Clarke and James Caleb Clarke, prominent lawyer. He graduated from Boys High School, attended Washington and Lee University, and graduated in 1938 from Washington and Lee University Law School. Deciding to pursue a Diplomatic Career, he attended the Manix Walker School of Foreign Service in Washington, D.C. and served in the office of the U.S. Consulate General in Toronto, Canada, but after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, he volunteered for the U.S. Naval Reserve and received his Officer's training at Princeton University. He was then posted as Communications Officer to the newly commissioned LST373 which sailed for Europe and participated in the invasions of Sicily, Italy, and was at Normandy at H-hour on D-day. After the war in Europe wound down, Mr. Clarke was sent back to the U.S. and then to Shanghai, China in the Judge Advocate General's office where he remained until the end of WWII. On returning to Atlanta, he established with friend Paul H. Anderson, the firm of Clarke and Anderson with Walter McElreath of Counsel. Growing over the years, the firm was joined by Stephens Mitchell, brother of Margaret Mitchell becoming Mitchell, Clarke, Pate and Anderson. Mr. Clarke specialized in Real Property and Savings and Loan law and in 1969 was appointed by President Nixon to be the Democratic Member of the 3 member board of the Federal Home Loan Bank Board in Washington, D.C. His signal achievement was to move the Federal Home Loan Bank of Greensboro to a more central location in Atlanta, which offered the ability to work directly with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. Returning to Atlanta in 1973, he rejoined his firm and continued his law practice as well as serving with Paul Anderson and Herbert Elsas as Copyright Trustees of Gone with the Wind, positions which Stephens Mitchell created for them to succeed him. Mr. Clarke was active over the years in the Atlanta, Georgia, American, and International Bar Associations and as President of the Atlanta Bar Association as well as President of the Old Warhorse Lawyer's Club. He was Chairman of the Corporate Section of the American Bar Association and later as Section Delegate to the House of Delegates. He was instrumental in founding the International Bar Association Building Society Committee and served as its Chairman. Active also in many Civic Organizations, Mr. Clarke was President and Chairman of the Atlanta Historical Society, The Atlanta Branch of the English Speaking Union and the Ansley Park Civic Association. An active alumnus of Washington and Lee University, he served on the Law Council, the Alumni Board and as a Trustee of the University. He was also a past member of the Board of Visitors of Emory University. Mr. Clarke was a member of the Metropolitan Club of Washington, D.C., a founding member of the Commerce Club and member of the Piedmont Driving Club in Atlanta. A Presbyterian, Mr. Clarke was ordained an Elder in 1959 and at the time of his death was an Elder Emeritus of Christ Church Presbyterian. In 1951, Mr. Clarke married the former Mary Louise Hastings who survives him. He is also survived by three children: Hal Clarke, Jr. and wife, Nan; Katie Clarke Hamilton, and husband Bill; and Becky Clarke Morrison and husband, Ralph; eight grandchildren and two great grandchildren. While traveling in Ireland in the mid 1960's, the Clarke family saw Kilfane House, an historic country house near Thomastown in the County Kilkenny. Part of a contested estate, it had sat empty many years and was in danger of demolition. In the early 1970's Mr. Clarke, as a non-Irish citizen, was permitted to bid when the house and acreage was auctioned. So began the restoration and slowly house, andgrounds were brought into order. He was never happier than when riding on his tractor mowing the extensive lawns or pulling grandchildren in the little blue wagon. Mr. Clarke participated in many of the local interests including membership in the Kilkenny Archeological Society, Friends of St. Canices Cathedral, the Tulleherin Heritage Society, KilfaneChurch and others. But closest to his heart was the Kilfane Handball Club to which he donated for their use the land on which it stood, as well as the Trophy for the Hal Clarke Cup. The Clarkes were also summer members of the Kilkenny Presbyterian church. A service will be held on Friday, November 6 at 2 PM, at Patterson's Spring Hill Chapel, The Rev. Al LaCour and the Rev. Pete Jackson officiating. Pallbearers will be Mr. Clarke's six grandsons: Toby, Charlie and Robbie Clarke, Caleb Hamilton and Ragan and Clarke Morrison. Honorary Pallbearers are Paul H. Anderson, Dave Williams, Steve Unti and Bill Holberg. A visitation will be held at 1:00 PM on Friday as well as 7:30 to 9:00 PM Thursday November 5, both at Patterson's Spring Hill. Special thanks are extended to the "Visiting Angels" who took such thoughtful care of Mr. Clarke during his illness: Beatrice Peterson, Yolanda Williams, Veronica Burnice, and Deborah Bryan. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to Christ Church Presbyterian, 1740 Peachtree St. Atlanta 30309, Washington and Lee University, Reformed Theological Seminary of Atlanta or to the charity of your choice. Online condolences may be made at

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Published in Atlanta Journal-Constitution from Nov. 4 to Nov. 5, 2015.
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Memories & Condolences
Guest Book sponsored by H.M. Patterson & Son-Spring Hill Chapel
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20 entries
March 19, 2016
Dear Mary Louise and family,

Barbara and I have learned just today of Hal's home going. We remember with great fondness our time with the two of you and many family members both in Atlanta and at Kilfane and we bless God for your friendship. Our prayers shall continue to be with you all.

Leslie Holmes
Leslie Holmes
December 28, 2015
Dear Hal and Nan,

My condolences and our prayers are with you. My apologies, I just heard about Mr. Clarke Sr.'s passing when I read the Georgia Bar Journal. I was honored to work for the firm Gambrell, Clarke, Anderson & Stolz as a young lawyer. What an incredible legacy he left for so many lawyers here in Georgia. What a legacy he left for the world by his example of service, professionalism and kindness to others.

Betsy Griswold
November 12, 2015
Dear Mrs. Clarke, Nan and Hal, and all members of the Clarke family, we have all lost a remarkable person who shaped many lives for the better. He will live on in everyone he touched.
With sincere condolences to all of you, Nora V. Demleitner (W&L Law)
Nora Demleitner
November 11, 2015
Mr. and Mrs. Clarke were lifelong friends of my parents, A.B. and Wita Padgett. Always the perfect southern lady and gentleman, they epitomized all the wonderful things about the south. They hosted a beautiful party for us when we were engaged to be married, now 53 years ago. Mr. Clarke was instrumental in our son's admission to Washington & Lee. He left an indelible mark on Atlanta and all who knew him. May he rest in peace. Our love and deepest sympathies to Mrs. Clarke and the family.
Susan & Bill Gibson
November 6, 2015
Hal & Nan....

My sympathy to you on the loss of your Dad. What a remarkable life and legacy he left to all of you who loved him

Bill Farr
November 6, 2015
With sincere condolences to the Clarke family.
November 6, 2015
I am unable to attend the service because of a temporary illness. Hal was a great influence and mentor to me. I geive his loss
November 5, 2015
Mary Louise, what a rich long life. Hope to see you Friday. God's peace to you.
Chris and Suzanne White
November 5, 2015
In loving memory of Mr. Clarke whose presence will always be felt at Kilfane.
Pamela O'Keeffe
November 5, 2015
Sending much love from Kilfane.
Pamela O'Keeffe
November 5, 2015
Extending my deepest condolences for your great loss. Remembering the good things and good times regarding your loved one will bring you some comfort.
Chris L.
November 5, 2015
Dear Mary Louise,

My brother Charles and I were saddened to learn of the death of your husband Tom, and also we offer belated condolences in the death of your brother Don.Don and I shared space in Emory's neo-natal unit in April of 1929. Don sat behind me in the 7th grade at Clairemont School. We played baseball and football on your spacious lawn on Clairmont Ave. We lived next to Harry, Barbara, and Judy. What great memories! God bless you and your family.


Jim and Charles Harrison
November 5, 2015
The committee and members of Kilfane Handball Club, Kilfane ,Thomastown ,Co Kilkenny ,Rep of Ireland , have learned with great sadness and regret of the recent passing of Thomas Hal Clarke . Over the past 50 years he has been a great supporter and friend of this club. It is quite likely that without this support and generosity that the club would not exist in its current form, if at all. In the early eighties his efforts, assistance, and generosity secured the long term future of the handball club. For this, and his continuing interest, the club and its members are extremely grateful. We are therefore honoured to run our annual championship for a trophy in his name and will continue to do so in the future.
The handball alley will remain closed and silent on Thursday 5th and Friday 6th November 2015 to respect the passing of a valued friend . Ar Dheis De go raibh a anam . (May his soul be at the right hand of God )
The committee and club members wish to offer their condolences to Mr Clarke's family at this sad time.
Kilfane Handball Club
November 4, 2015
Uncle Hal will be greatly missed! I'm praying for your family at this time.
Ellen Donnerberg
November 4, 2015
May you all gain comfort as you consider God's provision to reunite us with loved ones who fall asleep in death..."He sent his only-begotten Son into the world so that we might gain life through him." (1 John 4:9). My condolences to you all...
B. Parks
November 4, 2015
May the God of all comfort strengthen the family during this time of deep sorrow. Those who pass on, God keeps in his memory because they are precious in his eyes. My sincerest condolences.Psalms 116:15
November 4, 2015
So sorry to hear about Uncle Hal. Will be praying for Aunt MaryLouise and family.
Lots of Love, Eloise
Eloise Bumgarner
November 4, 2015
May the family always remember the good name Thomas Clarke made for himself during his lifetime.--AH
November 4, 2015
May the God of comfort and tender mercies help you to cope with your sorrow at this time.
Robert Jones
November 4, 2015
May the God of all comfort be with you during this difficult time
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