Eddie Lovelace, circuit judge in Cumberland, Clinton and Monroe counties, dies at 78

09/18/2012 04:08 PM

Circuit Judge Eddie Lovelace, who served Cumberland, Clinton and Monroe counties, died Monday night at the age of 78.

Lovelace’s death was first reported by the Laker Country radio station in Russell County. That station is owned by House Republican Leader Jeff Hoover.

Lovelace, a former trial judge of the year award winner who had been on the bench since 1992, died at Vanderbilt Hospital after suffering a stroke last week, according to the radio station’s report.

Lovelace’s circuit covered half of the state Senate district represented by Republican Senate President David Williams of Burkesville. In fact, Lovelace presided over the case during last fall’s governor’s race regarding the unsealing of records related to Williams’ divorce from his first wife in 2002.

Williams issued a statement saying he was “saddened by the passing of my good friend.”

“As a recipient of the Trial Judge of the Year Award, his absence as an adjudicator and a mentor will be felt across the judicial arena,” said Williams, who has a law practice in Burkesville.

Gov. Steve Beshear called Lovelace “a fair, common-sense driven circuit court judge for the citizens of southern Kentucky. Our thoughts are with his wife, Joyce, and their two children during this difficult time.”

A judicial nominating committee can suggest names to the governor to appoint the successor to Lovelace.

Williams, through a spokeswoman, did not address whether he would consider seeking that judgeship.

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