Sixty Years in the Law

Kermit L. Racey '49, 51L

At 88 years old, Kermit L. Racey is still practicing law in Woodstock, Va., something he’s been doing for six decades. But, in a wonderful feature story in the July 22 edition of The Northern Virginia Daily, Kermit admitted that “I’m getting to the point where I’ve slowed down considerably.” So Kermit, who received both his bachelor’s and law degrees from W&L, says he might make this his last year of practice. Not that he’s really contemplating retirement, though. He plans to write a book about his experiences.

Kermit entered the University after serving in World War II and partook of a special program offered at the time, earning his undergraduate degree in 1949 and his law degree in 1951. After graduating, he spent six years as a judge advocate general in Europe and North Africa before returning to Woodstock, where he sat for 10 years as a county judge, spent one term as commonwealth’s attorney and has practiced with his son Kermit II in the firm Racey & Racey.

The Northern Virginia Daily story includes numerous anecdotes from Kermit’s courtroom days, including his view that lawyers used to be much friendlier with one another, and his philosophy that you have to win more than 50 percent of your cases to avoid being a failure.

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