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Judge looks back at career on bench
Judge Revercomb, who sits in King George and Caroline, is retiring after nearly 20 years on the bench

 King George Judge Horace A. Revercomb III is retiring after serving 19 years on the bench.
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Date published: 1/20/2010


He plays a mean saxophone.

And at 6-foot-5, he could have been a basketball star.

But instead, Horace A. Revercomb III ended up warming the bench--in the courtroom, that is.

Now, after nearly 20 years as a judge, Revercomb, 61, has decided to put down the gavel and retire in March.

He cited long nights in court, stress and fatigue as reasons for his retirement.

"I'm blessed with good health, but I have a family history of heart problems and I have to be mindful of that," he said in his King George chambers. "You owe the public your A-game and nothing less, and it's time for me to give someone else the opportunity."

The King George native, known as Hal, says he hadn't intended to go into law when he went away to Pembroke State University in North Carolina on a basketball scholarship.

Even though his father, Horace A. Revercomb Jr. had also been a judge for 17 years and others in his family had practiced law, it wasn't his goal.

"It was never something I thought about doing," he said. "My dad was a judge, but I didn't go following him around at work."

He said his first courtroom experience came from a job he had as an eligibility worker for the Department of Social Services in Spotsylvania County.

He said he enjoyed that because he was able to do a service for the public, but knew it wasn't exactly what he wanted to do.

Halfway through attending the International School of Law, now George Mason University, he came up with a plan.

After getting his law degree, he would go back home, start a small general law practice and work with his dad.

"That became my goal and it all fell into place," he said.

In an office just east of the King George Courthouse and across State Route 3 from his boyhood home, Revercomb hung out his shingle as a lawyer in the summer of 1978.

His father, who had retired as a judge, became his law partner. By law, he couldn't appear in any state court on behalf of a client or sign any pleadings, but he could assist his son with law theory and help him prepare for trial.

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