M. Patton Echols

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Marion Patton "Pat" Echols, Jr. (October 1, 1925 – July 26, 2012) was an attorney in Northern Virginia who served briefly as the only Republican to represent Arlington County, Virginia in the Virginia Senate. He was also an unsuccessful candidate for Attorney General of Virginia in 1973.

Early life[edit]

Echols was the son of Colonel Marion Patton Echols and Nancy Patterson McArthur. He was born October 1, 1925 in Honolulu in the U.S. Territory of Hawaii.[1] He married the former Susanne Stokes in 1956 and they raised two sons and two daughters in Arlington. They later divorced, and Echols married Beth McLaren in 2005.[2]

Political career[edit]

In 1963, Echols switched from the Democratic to the Republican party and was one of three Republican candidates for the three House of Delegates seats allocated to Arlington and elected countywide, at-large. He came in fifth with 9,139 votes.[3]

In February 1969, longtime Virginia State Senator Charles R. Fenwick who represented the 9th District died and in the snap Special Election in March, Echols was elected as a Republican over the expected victor Harrison Mann.[2] He served the balance of Fenwick's term and, as a result of the decennial redistricting in 1971, he ran in the 31st District and was defeated by Democratic Delegate [Clive Duval].[3]

Republicans tapped Echols in 1973 for the "unenviable task" of running against popular incumbent Virginia Attorney General Andy Miller and Miller won in a landslide.[4]

Later years[edit]

Echols practiced law for many years in Arlington and resided in McLean, Virginia. He died on July 26, 2012 and a memorial service was held at Grace Episcopal Church in Alexandria.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Echols Family Tree information
  2. ^ a b McCaffery, Scott (August 1, 2012). "First Republican State Senator from Arlington Dies at 86". Sun Gazette. Retrieved August 1, 2012. 
  3. ^ a b Arlington County historical election results
  4. ^ Atkinson, Frank The dynamic Dominion:realignment and the rise of two-party competition in Virginia, 1945-1980 University of Virginia, Center for Politics. 1986
Senate of Virginia
Preceded by
Charles R. Fenwick
Virginia Senate, District 9
1969–1972
Succeeded by
Clive L. Duval