Herman Hardy Hamilton, Jr., Colonel USMC (Ret) died peacefully on April 30, 2019. A memorial service will be held at Davidson United Methodist Church in Davidson, NC at 2:00 p.m. on Tuesday, May 7, followed by a reception at the church.
Born in Russellville, AL on February 4, 1928, Hamilton was the son of Delma Ferguson Hamilton (later Warner) and Herman Hardy Hamilton. At age 10, Hamilton moved to Montgomery, AL with his mother and sister, attending the Montgomery public schools and graduating from Sidney Lanier High School in 1946 as president of his Senior Class.
James Funeral Home is serving the family.
Hamilton was a scholar, earning his college degree at Notre Dame University (Mehan Scholar, BA Magna Cum Laude, 1950) and then winning the coveted Rhodes Scholarship to attend Exeter College at Oxford University (BA 1952, MA 1954), where he encountered great figures of his generation in Britain's post-WWII rationing and rebuilding environment. After completing a military tour in the Mediterranean, Hamilton completed his legal studies at the University of Alabama School of Law (JD 1955).
Following his graduation from Notre Dame, Hamilton was commissioned in the United States Marine Corps. He served two years of active duty in the Korean War, then 30 years in the USMC Reserves, retiring as Colonel in 1982. His posts included Commander of the Marine Unit in Montgomery and Head of the Selective Service Reserve Unit for the State of Alabama.
Hamilton met Kathleen Campbell (Kitty) at the Marine Corps Ball at Camp Lejeune, and they married in 1954. The couple moved to Montgomery where Hamilton clerked for Mr. Justice Simpson of the Supreme Court of Alabama, joined Walter J. Knabe (then Montgomery City Attorney), partnered with Dean, Hamilton, and King, and then practiced more than forty years as a partner of Capell Howard Knabe and Cobbs, PA. He was active in the early civil rights cases involving the City of Montgomery, including the Rosa Parks and Tuskegee Syphilis Cases. In addition to his corporate law work, Hamilton helped establish the Alabama Medicaid Agency which extended healthcare to the elderly and disabled; there he served as General Counsel a played a pivotal role in landmark cases involving Medicaid entitlement and reimbursement.
While in Montgomery, the Hamiltons raised their children and enjoyed visiting their beloved Lake Martin cabin. In 1996, they moved to Lake Norman, North Carolina to be near family and relocated subsequently to The Pines in Davidson, North Carolina.
Throughout Hamilton's life, he was an active churchman¬-Baptist, Presbyterian, United Methodist, and even studying under Catholic priests at Notre Dame. He was a member of the Kiwanis Club, The Chairman of the Young Lawyers Section of the State Bar, and President of the Montgomery County Bar Association. He supported Habitat for Humanity and was an advocate for Children's Harbor, an organization that serves seriously ill children and their families.
Colonel Hamilton is survived by his wife of 64 years, Kitty, of The Pines at Davidson, NC; two daughters, Katy Cook (Reuben) of Tuscaloosa, AL, and Leslie Thomas of Davidson, NC; four grandchildren, Hamilton and Cammie Cook, Will and Nelle Thomas; a sister-in-law, Leslie Lambert, and treasured nieces and nephews. His only sister, Camilla Lowry (Jimmy) died in 2006.
The family wishes to acknowledge the excellent and faithful care provided by his caregivers, Hospice of Lake Norman, and the staff of the Pines at Davidson.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to:
1 Our Children's Highway
Alexander City AL 35010
James Funeral Home of Huntersville is serving the family. jamesfuneralhomeLKN.com
Published in the Montgomery Advertiser on May 5, 2019.