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WATER VALLEY – The Yalobusha County Board of Supervisors adopted a proclamation honoring former Board Attorney John Crow’s four decades of service to the county. The recognition came in Monday’s board meeting in the Water Valley courthouse with a large gathering of former and current county officials in attendance.
Board President Cayce Washington opened the meeting and shared a brief overview of Crow’s service before the proclamation was adopted.
“We want to recognize you, for the years of service that you invested in this county,” Washington told Crow. “Forty years of service is a long time. You provided strong legal direction for this entire county and made it a better place. You invested your time and efforts in this county, not only through this role, but also by being involved in this community,” the board president noted.
Washington also noted that Crow could have left Water Valley after graduating from law school.
“He could have went anywhere that he wanted to live and raise his family. But John came back to Water Valley and Yalobusha County. He took the job as Board Attorney in 1981,” Washington continued.
“It has been an honor, it’s been a real, real honor. This is just the high point of my life,” Crow told the group Monday. “It passed fast. I look back to when I was hired, they wanted somebody who was young. I was young, I had been practicing law six months.”
Crow expressed gratitude to his former bosses, the supervisors he guided during his tenure, as well as the chancery clerks.
“Amy (McMinn) for over 20 years, Bob Chandler for a few terms, and then Bobby Clark, my old coach,” he noted.
“I always did one thing. I would hear tales across the state about how board attorneys took sides,” Crow recalled. “I tried not to even appear to take sides,” he continued about providing blunt advice about what the state code says without adding his opinion.
“I probably did some things I shouldn’t have done, said some things I shouldn’t have said, because I am an outspoken person. I had to pay for that sometimes,” Crow said.
Former supervisor Butch Surrette was the first to speak when the floor opened for comments. Surrette recalled that when he first took office years ago, there were some strong-willed people seated around the board table.
“And John was pretty vocal,” Butch recalled. “But I learned over a period of time that our board attorney was smarter than most board attorneys in the state,” Surrette said. “And what little John didn’t know, Henry Dean (Gray) taught him,” Surrette joked.
“I sat right by Henry Dean, every meeting. Henry Dean was pretty opinionated, as you know,” Crow added. “And after he gave his opinion on something, he would always say ‘isn’t that right, John?’”
“I hired you, John,” Gray chimed in.
Another longtime supervisor, Amos Sims, was next to speak.
“John was always a good friend. I was like part of his family,” Sims said, adding he appreciated the respect Crow showed for him.
“His daughter and my daughter grew up together. Whenever my wife and I were around other people with John, he always saw us as being close friends. I appreciate that,” Sims continued.
Supervisors next unanimously voted to adopt the proclamation.
“And whereas throughout his career, John J. Crow, Jr. served the Board of Supervisors by advising and assisting the board with day-to-day legal issues, by representing the interests of Yalobusha County in numerous legal matters. And by always advocating the best interests of Board of Supervisors and citizens of Yalobusha County,” the resolution states in part.
Crow stepped aside as lead board attorney in January, 2020, as the new four-year term for the Board of Supervisors started. Crow’s son, Shannon Crow, was appointed to the position.
“This county is a better place because of John, and because the people who have served before us today,” Washington added.