HJ5167: Celebrating the life of the Honorable Vernon Thomas Forehand, Jr.

HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 5167

Offered August 25, 2014
Celebrating the life of the Honorable Vernon Thomas Forehand, Jr.
Patron-- Leftwich

WHEREAS, the Honorable Vernon Thomas Forehand, Jr., a former chief judge of the Circuit Court of the 1st Judicial Circuit of Virginia and a distinguished public servant who ably represented the residents of the City of Chesapeake in the House of Delegates, died on August 19, 2014; and

WHEREAS, a lifelong resident of the City of Chesapeake, Thomas Forehand graduated from Norfolk Academy and earned a bachelor’s degree from Haverford College; after his service as a second lieutenant in the Virginia Air National Guard and employment as a social worker and a probation officer, he earned a law degree from the University of Richmond; and

WHEREAS, in 1974, Thomas Forehand was admitted to the Virginia State Bar and became an assistant Commonwealth’s attorney in the City of Chesapeake; he went on to practice law solo and as a partner in Townsend, Roy, and Forehand and Roy, Forehand, Laine, and Dale; and

WHEREAS, desirous to be of further service to the Commonwealth, Thomas Forehand ran for and was elected to the House of Delegates in 1979; he built strong relationships with every member of the Chesapeake delegation and ably represented the residents of the 77th District from 1980 to 1993; and

WHEREAS, Thomas Forehand introduced many important pieces of legislation throughout his career, and he was most proud of a 1989 bill to abolish corporal punishment in public schools; he offered his wise leadership to the Committees on Chesapeake and its Tributaries; Conservation and Natural Resources; Corporations, Insurance and Banking; and Education; and

WHEREAS, in 1993, Thomas Forehand was appointed judge of the Chesapeake General District Court of the 1st Judicial District of Virginia, and in 1995, he was appointed judge of the Chesapeake Circuit Court of the 1st Judicial Circuit of Virginia, where he served as chief judge for almost 15 years and presided with great fairness and wisdom until his well-earned retirement in 2014; and

WHEREAS, working to enhance the quality of life of his fellow residents, Thomas Forehand volunteered his time and talents with several civic, service, and peer organizations; a man of great integrity, he served the Chesapeake community and the Commonwealth with dedication and distinction; and

WHEREAS, Thomas Forehand will be fondly remembered and greatly missed by his beloved wife, Linda; children, Lindsay and Walker, and their families; numerous other family members and friends; and colleagues on both sides of the aisle; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the House of Delegates, the Senate concurring, That the General Assembly hereby note with great sadness the loss of the Honorable Vernon Thomas Forehand, Jr., a devoted public servant and a respected community leader in the City of Chesapeake; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the House of Delegates prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to the family of the Honorable Vernon Thomas Forehand, Jr., as an expression of the General Assembly’s respect for his memory.