Former GA Chief Justice dies

Former GA Chief Justice dies
Justice Carley was 82. (Source: AJC)

ATLANTA, Ga. (WALB) - The Supreme Court of Georgia announced Friday that Former Chief Justice George H. Carley died late Thursday night.

Chief Justice Harold D. Melton has announced the former justice passed away around 11:00 p.m. at Emory Decatur Hospital, from COVID-19. He was 82 years old.

Justice Carley was appointed to the Supreme Court of Georgia in 1993 by then-Gov. Zell Miller. In May 2012, he was sworn in as the 29th Chief Justice, serving as leader of Georgia’s judicial system until Dec. 31, 2012, when his term in office came to an end.

Prior to serving on the state’s highest court, Justice Carley was a judge on the Court of Appeals of Georgia, the state’s intermediate appellate court, from 1979 until 1993. Justice Carley was the first in Georgia history to serve as Presiding Judge and Chief Judge of the Court of Appeals, and as Presiding Justice and Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court.

Besides his family, he loved two things: the Georgia Bulldogs and the Court. A stickler for protocol, he was known for never appearing in public without being “properly attired” in a coat and tie.

“We are devastated by the loss of Justice Carley, a beloved friend and colleague to so many of us,” Chief Justice Melton said. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife, Sandy, his son, George H. Carley, Jr., and his two grandsons.”

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