Luther Morris, the region’s first black circuit court clerk who also served on the Caroline County Board of Supervisors, has died. Morris, who died Sunday, was 70.
He was the first black circuit clerk in the Fredericksburg region and possibly Virginia. He was first elected in 1983, defeating three other candidates, including the son of the retiring circuit court clerk. He held the post through 1991.
Before his election to circuit court clerk, Morris served as the representative of the Reedy Church district on the Board of Supervisors for 12 years. He ran for the seat again in 1995, won election, and served through 1999.
“He was a pioneer for blacks to get involved in any kind of government, local or state,” the Rev. Marvin Fields, pastor at Second Mount Zion Baptist Church, told The Free Lance-Star newspaper.
Fields, who was his pastor for 16 years, said Morris was a faithful deacon of the church, and he spoke highly of his public service to Caroline.
“I would think that he paved the way not just for Caroline County but for the whole Commonwealth of Virginia,” Fields told the newspaper.
Morris had ben named the NAACP Citizen of the Year and the Second Mount Zion Baptist Church Man of the Year.
Morris once had served as director of the Frog Level Volunteer Rescue Squad. He was a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, AARP, the Dawn Progressive Association, and the Rappahannock Area Agency on Aging.
Funeral arrangements were incomplete.