McKay, James Ross

Longtime Bankruptcy Lawyer In North Georgia

Wednesday, April 17, 2019
James McKay
James McKay

Erudition is that high level of learning acquired by reading, study, and scholarship. It is most often attributed to those who have given their life to academics. Rare though they be, there are such men who choose to give their lives to the more mundane labors of mankind and to those industries that are more apt to touch the lives of the masses. Although men such as this could have chosen to remain within the ivy covered walls enclosing the halls of learned scholars, some do not find satisfaction in the giving of life’s labors to increasing the academic knowledge of ephemeral things. They instead venture into the work of serving their fellow man in the difficult navigation of daily life. This kind of man is fulfilled only through being afforded the opportunity to give counsel to the people of his community. James Ross McKay was such a man. That James Ross McKay was a man who could rightly be called a man of letters was known to all who knew him. Yes, James Ross McKay was a man of erudition, but he owed his fame chiefly to his personality.

That wry grin of his, which when it spread across his countenance, announced to the world that this was a man who appreciated humor and who did not take himself too seriously. When he was amused a facial contortion spread across his face that caused his eyes to all but disappear until the punchline was delivered after which he would join his company in hearty laughter.

I had the privilege of working with Jim McKay for most of twenty five years as his law partner. I had heard that there was a former teacher and band director who had become a lawyer and had had seen him in court defending indigents in criminal cases. I watched as he stood before the court and advocated for the poor. These were the hardest of cases and the odds were against him but there stood James Ross McKay arguing for this client without fear or embarrassment. I was impressed and pulled him aside after court telling him that if he was ever interested I would like to someday practice law with him. The day he came to work with me as my partner changed the course of my life for the better. Jim and I worked for twenty five years representing thousands of debtors in bankruptcy proceedings. With his leadership and tireless work and long hours Fuller and McKay became the eighth largest bankruptcy law firm in the state of Georgia. Our clients were the honest working people of Northwest Georgia who were under the threat of becoming homeless with great burdens of debt caused by illness, death of a spouse, or loss of employment. The idea to take on this work was Jim’s idea entirely. I came reluctantly to the work. I will never forget the day he came to me saying that the people we were representing against the corporate giants were the same people Jesus had called ‘The least of these.’

James Ross McKay was a good and decent man. He dearly loved his wife, Amy Shelly McKay whom he married on the 19th day of June, 2009. He also loved his children; Cameron Ross McKay, who preceded him in death in 1988; Collin Charles McKay who preceded him in death in 2014; his beautiful daughters, Jennifer Kelley McKay of Rome, and Heather McKay-Schraeder of New Braunfels,Tx.; two stepsons, Stafford Andrew McPherson of Wildwood, Ga. and James Andrew Madden of Chattanooga; two grandsons, Charles Andrew Schraeder and Allen Ross Schraeder of new Braunfels, Tx.; one step grandson, Eli James McPherson of Wildwood, Ga.

Mr. McKay passed away at his residence following a long struggle with cancer. In compliance with his wishes, he is to be cremated and no services will be held to mark his passing. Those who wish to extend condolences are urged to make a donation to the American Cancer Society at James Ross McKay came this way and left his mark advocating for the poor and the disadvantaged. The world is the better for it.

Willis-Hall, Joan S.

Wickwire, Sarah Adele

Boyd, William Glenn "Bill" Jr.

Joan S. Willis-Hall, 66, died May 17, 2019. She is survived by her husband, Eugene A. Hall; daughters, Angela (Delmon) Robertson, Schonta Willis (Wilbert) Johnson; and grandson, whom she was ... (click for more)

Sarah Adele Wickwire, 98, died on May 20, 2019. She was born on December 14, 1920 to the late Earl and Faye Dorland. She was preceded in death by her husband, Elder Bruce Wickwire Sr., ... (click for more)

William Glenn “Bill” Boyd, Jr. 79, of Dalton, Georgia, passed away on Monday, May 20, 2019. He was the son of the late William Glenn Boyd, Sr. and Gertrude Warmack Boyd and was also preceded ... (click for more)


Willis-Hall, Joan S.

Joan S. Willis-Hall, 66, died May 17, 2019. She is survived by her husband, Eugene A. Hall; daughters, Angela (Delmon) Robertson, Schonta Willis (Wilbert) Johnson; and grandson, whom she was parenting, Jont’a Smith. She also leaves behind loving grandchildren, great-grandchildren other relatives and friends. Visitation will be Friday May 24, 2019 at 11 a.m. at Phillips Temple ... (click for more)

Wickwire, Sarah Adele

Sarah Adele Wickwire, 98, died on May 20, 2019. She was born on December 14, 1920 to the late Earl and Faye Dorland. She was preceded in death by her husband, Elder Bruce Wickwire Sr., son-in-law, Bill Clemons and siblings, Clifford Dorland, Elaine Leno and Earlene Claridge. She is survived by her children, Barbara Clemons, Linda (Jim) Breedlove and Bruce (Victoria) ... (click for more)

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Ownby, Grace Estelle (Cleveland)

Grace Estelle Ownby, 96, of Cleveland, passed away on May 19, 2019, at the Garden Plaza Senior Living Center where she had resided for over 12 years. She was the daughter of the late Frank and Etta Tate of Ducktown, Tn., and was born on Dec. 31, 1922. In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by husband, Ashley L. Ownby, Jr.; sisters, Irene Shinpaugh (Joe), ... (click for more)

Stout, Sheridan "Sheri" Ann (Cleveland)

Sheridan "Sheri" Ann Stout, 71, of Cleveland, passed away on Saturday, May 18, 2019. She was born January 2, 1948, in Albertsville, Al. Her family soon moved to Cleveland, where she attended Mayfield Elementary and later graduated from Bradley Central High School. Sheri was the owner of several local business and also a licensed real estate agent. She was a member of Mt. ... (click for more)

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