Jimbo Hale Jr. dead at 78

Former prosecutor remembered fondly

By the Evening Times News Staff news@theeveningtimes.com

A longtime fixture in the community, James “Jimbo” Cecil Hale, Jr., passed away Tuesday, following an illness. Hale was an attorney and a Crittenden County Prosecuting Attorney for 45 years, his family is still actively involved in the community. Friends and colleagues shared a few fond memories of Hale Wednesday afternoon. “I worked with Mr. Hale when I was a deputy prosecutor while he was deputy prosecutor,” said Crittenden County Attorney Rogers. “We were in the same law firm for about 30 years. He was unique individual and a great prosecutor. It’s really sad. I knew him well and am going to miss him.” “I really liked him. I thought he was a fine prosecutor,” said Chadd Durrett, a local attorney. “I really liked him. I thought he was a fine prosecutor. I was close friends with him through the years.” Durrett recalled Hale’s affinity for hunting, one trip in particular with he, Hale and attorney Vince Skillman in Hughes. “He loved his hunting,” Durrett remembered. “He and Vince were political opposites. It seemed like they were constantly going at each other’s politics.” Mayor Bill Johnson said, “I’ve known Jimbo through the political and government realm for a number of years. He devoted a considerable portion of his adult life toward government. Jimbo made a difference in the community where he lived. He is well respected and will be remembered throughout this part of Arkansas.” Judge John Fogleman, who worked with Hale for a number of years as a prosecutor admired his co-worker’s approach to the job. “He really cared about the county. People missed him after he quit handling district court and the initial filings that he always handled,” he said. “He had a great feel for what the community would think about a particular case.” Fogleman continued, “He was quite a character. One of the things that stands out in my mind most clearly was when I was a very young attorney Jimbo telling me ‘Don’t ever trust the press.’ Years later when I developed a relationship with some members in the press he’d say ‘I don’t know why you trust him.’” Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 28, at Roller-Citizens Funeral Home, located at 201 North Pine St., in West Memphis. Church services will be conducted on Monday, Feb. 29, at 10 a.m., at the Marion United Methodist Church, 81 Military Rd.

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