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James Thomas Dailey, Jr.

February 19, 1925 ~ May 27, 2018 (age 93)

JAMES THOMAS DAILEY, JR., Esq. age 93 of Kingwood, WV passed away peacefully at Preston Memorial Hospital on May 27, 2018. 

Jim was born on February 19, 1925 in Kingwood, a son of the late James T. Dailey, Sr. Esq. and Nancy Catherine Pugh Dailey.

Jim was a Presbyterian by faith.  He graduated from Kingwood High School in 1942 and then attended Potomac State College. Wanting to defend our country in WWII he enlisted in the Marine Corp in 1943 and trained extensively for the invasion of Japan but of course was never deployed.  He then attended Rochester University and Case Western Reserve University.  He graduated from WVU School of Law in January of 1949.  He was a knight of Kappa Alpha Order at WVU.  Jim practiced defense law with his father in Kingwood until becoming Preston County Prosecuting Attorney in 1953 and held that office until 1964.  Practicing defense law with the firms Dailey, Halbritter & Smith and Dailey & Miller. He then spent eight years as assistant prosecutor specializing in juvenile abuse and neglect under Virginia Hopkins and Randy Goodrich.  He returned to public defense with Dailey & Bolyard until his last merger with McNeer, Highland, McMunn & Varner to bring a wider diversity of law services to Preston County.   

He was a member of the Preston County Bar Association (Past President); West Virginia State Bar (Former member of Board of Governors); American Bar Association; West Virginia Prosecuting Attorney’s Association (Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998); West Virginia Bar Association; Association of Trial Lawyers. In 1996 he was appointed a delegate to the National Symposium on Juvenile Justice.  Jim was a humble gentleman but he mentored many a young lawyer and is held in high esteem by most for his wealth of information, love of teaching and belief in abiding by the rules of ethics.  As a young attorney he was privileged to have two of his cases featured in True Detective magazine, helped to found the West Virginia Prosecutors Attorney’s Association and helped to draft the first Pattern Jury instructions for West Virginia Judges.

Apart from work and family time he was crucial in bringing about innovative change to Preston County.  He partnered and brought the first radio station, WFSP, to Preston County just as his father had brought the first theatre.  He worked hard to bring about the building of Preston Memorial Hospital, Kingwood Community Building and downsizing the Preston County Commission to name a few.

Early on his hobbies included golf and bird hunting but his true passion was fly-fishing which he continued sparingly into his 80’s.  He was the Secretary-Treasurer of Muddy Creek Recreational Club for 64 years and believed in the ecological maintenance of fresh water streams for native trout and other fish.  He was also a past president of Preston County Club, a lifetime member of Trout Unlimited and the Ruffed Grouse Society among many others.  He enjoyed attending WVU Mountaineer football games with his family and watching sports.

Jim is survived by his loving family including daughters Kyle Dailey O’Hara of Napa, CA, Catherine M. Dailey of Boulder, CO, and Lisa Dailey-Reckart of Kingwood; grandsons James Patterson of Eureka, CA and Thomas Dailey Reckart of Valley Point, WV; granddaughters Caitlin Bennink of Chula Vista, CA and Kyleen Dailey Reckart of Kingwood; great grandchildren (twins) Ronan Dailey and Penelope June Bennink of Chula Vista; sons-in-law Michael Mays of Crab Orchard, WV and Greg Reckart of Kingwood; grand son-in-law Dr. Justin Bennink of Chula  Vista; special friend Susan M. Sisler of Cranesville, WV and nephews David, Daniel, Christopher, Patrick and Michael Noel and families as well as Gregory Britton of Morgantown, WV and Franklin E. Wolfe, Jr. of Pleasantdale, WV.

In addition to his parents, Jim was preceded in death by his wife JoAnne Britton Dailey of Kingwood; his oldest daughter Kimberly K. Dailey Mays of Crab Orchard, WV and sister Nancy Patricia Noel of Oxford, NC.

Jim’s wishes were to be cremated and then interned at Maplewood Cemetery in Kingwood.  Visitation will be on June 29, 2018 at Browning Funeral Home from 2pm to 7pm.  A memorial service will be held at Kingwood Presbyterian Church on June 30, 2018 at 11am with Minister James Riggs officiating.  

Memorial donations on his behalf can be made to the Thomas Wendell Perrill Scholarship Fund c/o Clear Mountain Bank, 330 East Main St., Kingwood, WV 26537 and the P Pendleton Kennedy Chapter of Trout Unlimited, c/o William Pennington, 260 Eastland Ave., Morgantown, WV 26505

Online condolences can be sent to www.browningfuneralhomewv.com. Browning Funeral Home and Crematory is honored to serve the Dailey family.


Donations may be made to:

P Pendleton Kennedy Chapter of Trout Unlimited
C/O William Pennington, 260 Eastland Ave, Morgantown, WV 26505

Thomas Wendell Perrill Scholarship Fund
C/O Blear Mountain Bank, 330 East Main Street, Kingwood WV 26537


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