COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) — A prominent Columbus personal injury attorney with a national reputation for taking on big business and special interests died Thursday in Emory Hospital in Atlanta.
Neal Pope was 83 years old.
His wife of 46 years, Virginia, confirmed her husband’s death. A resident of Lee County, Ala., and a native of Montgomery, Pope will be buried Wednesday, Aug. 17 at a private ceremony in Fort Mitchell National Cemetery. A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. that morning at St. Luke United Methodist Church in downtown Columbus.
He survived a heart transplant in 1993 and quadruple bypass surgery in 2004. He has won multi-million dollar verdicts on the civil side and defended those facing the Alabama electric chair.
Here’s what he said in a 2016 Ledger-Enquirer interview:
“My job’s been my life, and so when we talk about my life, we’re talking about my job, really,” Pope said. “This is the only job I’ve ever had — other than the Marine Corps. I started working when I was 12 and worked constantly until I went into the Marine Corps, even when I was in college. My folks didn’t have any money. I had to work.”
Pope credited his time in the U.S. Marine Corps with the foundation on which his business and legal success were built.
He is survived by his wife, four children, and seven grandchildren.