Wilbur D. Owens Jr.

  • "They told me that Wilber Owens was dead, but I don!t have..."
    - Mayo Livingston
  • "Betty and John We are so sorry to hear of Judge Owens..."
  • "I am honored to have met and worked with Judge Owens back..."
    - Franklin D. R. Wesley I
  • "I am honored to have met Judge Wilbur Owens years ago. He,..."

Judge Wilbur D. Owens, Jr. - MACON - Judge Wilbur D. Owens, Jr., 80, died Wednesday, April 28, 2010 after a long illness. Judge Owens was born on February 1, 1930 in Albany, Georgia to the late Wilbur Dawson Owens and Estelle McKenzie Owens. He grew up in Albany, Georgia where he began his career working odd jobs as a paper boy, a meter reader, and a peach packer. In middle school, his family moved to Miami, Florida for two years while his father volunteered as a Captain in the U.S. Army. While in Miami, he served as president of his junior high school class. He then moved back to Albany and graduated from high school at the young age of 17. Judge Owens attended Emory University and the University of Georgia, serving as both rush chairman and president of his fraternity, Phi Delta Theta. He graduated from Georgia Law School with his Bachelor of Laws degree in 1952. Owens served in the U.S. Air Force from 1952 to 1954 at Edwards Air Force Base in California and in the Reserves from 1954 to 1968. He moved back to Albany and worked in private practice before becoming vice president and trust officer for the Bank of Albany. He was then secretary-treasurer of the Southeastern Mortgage Company from 1959 to 1962. While living in Albany, Judge Owens served as Chairman of the United Givers Fund, President of the American Cancer Society, Chairman of the March of Dimes Campaign, and a steward at the First Methodist Church. In 1962, Judge Owens and his family moved to Macon, Georgia where he became Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia , resuming private practice from 1965 to 1972 with the law firm of Bloch, Hall, Hawkins, and Owens. During those years, Owens also served on the Board of Trustees of Stratford Academy and the Board of the Museum of Arts and Sciences. He was chairman of the Bibb County Republican party and ran for state representative. On January 21, 1972, Owens was nominated by President Richard M. Nixon to a seat vacated by his mentor and friend, William Bootle. Judge Owens served as a judge for the Middle District of Georgia and later as the chief judge until 1995 when he assumed senior status. Judge Owens retired in January 2008. While on the bench, Judge Owens was known for his fairness, his work ethic, and his adherence to professional standards. He was also a genuinely kind man and was a mentor to many who worked for him and with him. Judge Owens was a former member of Mulberry Methodist Church and the Kiwanis Club and a member of First Presbyterian Church, the Macon Rotary Club, and the Grid Iron Club at the University of Georgia. Judge Owens is survived by his wife of fifty-two years, Elizabeth Glenn Owens; children, Lindsey Stevens (Brad), Wilbur Owens (Beth), Stell Syretz (Rich), and John Owens; and grandchildren, Brad Stevens, Jr., McKenzie Stevens, Scott Stevens, Christopher Owens, Elizabeth Owens, Catherine Syretz, and Carolyn Syretz. Judge Owens is also survived by his sister, Beverly Cummings and her husband, Bob, of Atlanta, Georgia and his brother, Dr. Bobby McKenzie and his wife, Dr. Kerry Reif, of Bozeman, Montana and many nieces and nephews. Graveside services will be held at 1 p.m. Friday at Riverside Cemetery, entering through the Madison Street entrance. Visitation will be after the service. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Ronald McDonald House of Central Georgia or to Wesley Glenn Ministries. Snow's Memorial Chapel Funeral and Cremation Services Cherry Street Savannah Morning News April 29, 2010 Please sign our Obituary Guest Book at savannahnow.com/obituaries .

Published in Savannah Morning News on Apr. 29, 2010
Arrangements under the direction of:
Snow's Memorial Chapel
746 Cherry Street | Macon, GA 31201 | (478) 743-7417
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