Gartin Building Courtroom with the Great Seal of the State of Mississippi

Retired Circuit Judge Marcus Gordon died May 26

May 26, 2016

Retired Circuit Judge Marcus D. Gordon of Union died on Thursday, May 26, at St. Dominic Hospital in Jackson. He was 84.

The funeral service will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 29, at First Baptist Church in Union. Visitation will be held from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 28, at First Baptist Church in Union, and 30 minutes before the service at the church. Burial will be in the Union City Cemetery. Milling Funeral Home in Union is handling arrangements.

Circuit Judge Marcus D. Gordon

Judge Gordon retired almost three months ago, on March 4, from the Eighth District Circuit Court of Leake, Neshoba, Newton and Scott counties.

Supreme Court Chief Justice Bill Waller Jr. said that at the time of his retirement, Judge Gordon was the longest serving circuit judge in Mississippi. He served as Circuit Judge of the Eighth Judicial District for 37 years.

Chief Justice Waller said, “Judge Gordon served with distinction in many capacities throughout his long career. He will be missed by all. He courageously presided over many very difficult cases, including the trial of Edgar Ray Killen.”

Neshoba County Circuit Clerk Patti Duncan Lee said, “He was an amazing man. He’s going to be missed terribly – has been and will be. He ran a firm courtroom but a fair courtroom. He treated everyone the same. By his presence, he commanded respect. If he thought you needed to do something differently, he sure didn’t mind telling you so. He was just one of a kind.”

“He dedicated his life to the legal process in Mississippi. It was his life,” said attorney Melissa Carleton, who was Judge Gordon’s law clerk for three years.

At the time of his retirement, Judge Gordon said, “I thank the people who let me have this office and stay in this office as long as I have. They gave me their trust, and I am confident that in no fashion did I ever let that trust be violated.” Judge Gordon submitted his resignation on the anniversary of his appointment to the bench. Gov. Cliff Finch appointed him as circuit Judge of the Eighth Judicial District on March 4, 1977, after Judge O.H. Barnett resigned. Judge Gordon left the bench briefly to return to private law practice with his nephew in 1987. He was reelected in 1991.

Judge Gordon previously served as district attorney for six and one-half years in the Eighth Circuit District. He was county prosecutor for Newton County for four years.

He was admitted to the bar in 1959. As a lawyer in private practice, he represented the Newton County Board of Supervisors as well as municipalities, school boards and hospitals.

He attended East Central Junior College in Decatur, now known as East Central Community College. He earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from the University of Mississippi and a law degree from the University of Mississippi School of Law.

He served four years in the U.S. Air Force as an airplane mechanic assigned to the Strategic Air Command.