Bar Honors Late Attorney - Daily News-Record Article

Bar Honors Late Attorney - Daily News-Record Article

HARRISONBURG — George Raymond Aldhizer Jr. worked hard at everything he did.

He was known as a stellar attorney, including a 23- year stint as Rockingham County’s attorney. Aldhizer was also a successful cattle farmer. But, most of all, his friends say, he was known simply as a nice guy. “ The world lost a true Southern gentleman upon George’s passing,” said Glenn Hodge, who worked with Aldhizer for roughly 40 years. “ How he lived his life — with honesty, integrity, quiet stoicism

and good humor — remains an inspiration.” Hodge was among several dozen community members to gather Friday afternoon in Rockingham County Circuit Court for a special session to accept resolutions from the Harrisonburg- Rockingham County Bar Association honoring the late Aldhizer. Judge T. J. Wilson presided over the ceremony. “ He was a man held in high regard to all that knew him,” Wilson said.

Aldhizer, 84, died Sept. 19, 2015, at his home on Maple Leaf Farm in Harrisonburg. He was born March 9, 1931, in Harrisonburg to the late G. Raymond and Florence Brunton Aldhizer, according to his obituary. He was preceded in death by his wife, Lo Byerly Aldhizer.

According to the resolution, he earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Richmond in the early 1950s. He spent the next two years as a field secretary for his fraternity, Phi Gamma Delta. Aldhizer graduated from the University of Virginia Law School in 1958 and joined Wharton, Aldhizer and Weaver in Harrisonburg, the resolution says. His father, George Aldhizer Sr., was a partner in the firm. “ The three named partners … were all tough and demanding bosses in their own way, and by the time George became a partner, he had passed through an unrelenting and grueling apprenticeship,” Hodge said.

Most of his career focused on business and real estate law until he retired from the firm in 2003, Hodge said.

Hodge noted that one of Aldhizer’s most famous real estate deals included helping Yoko Ono purchase a Page County farm.

He served on the Rockingham National Bank board starting in the 1960s. He saw the bank through several mergers, including with Wachovia Bank, before wrapping up his service in 2005, the resolution says.

In 1971, he became the county’s attorney, and oversaw a legal battle for six years between the city and county over annexation, according to the resolution.

Outside the office, Hodge said, Aldhizer raised Angus cattle and once served as president of the Virginia Angus Association.

“For George, there was little better in the world than a medium rare beef tenderloin … certified Angus beef that is,” Hodge said. “The recruiting dinners at George’s home always gave his law firm an unfair advantage in attracting new legal talent.”

Daily News-Record - By Pete DeLea - March 25, 2017