Warlick Carr

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Marvin Warlick Carr
Lubbock attorney Warlick Carr.jpg
Born (1921-01-04)January 4, 1921
Fairlie, Hunt County, Texas, USA
Died July 9, 2008(2008-07-09) (aged 87)
Lubbock, Lubbock County, Texas
Occupation Attorney
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Billilee "Bee" Ragan Carr (married 1949-his death)

Leanne Carr Meyer

Bradley Warlick Carr

(1) Carr was honored as a lawyer in both Lubbock and the state of Texas during a legal career of more than a half century.

(2) While Carr concentrated on the private practice of law, his older brother, Waggoner Carr, entered politics and became Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives and attorney general of Texas.

(3) In 1962, Carr directed the filing of some thirty civil suits against the Pecos financier Billie Sol Estes, accused of fraud and misrepresentation.

(4) Though the Carrs were Democrats, Warlick Carr was a 2007 donor to the 2008 campaign of Republican U.S. Senator John Cornyn.

Marvin Warlick Carr (January 4, 1921 – July 9, 2008) was a prominent American attorney in Lubbock, Texas, and the brother of former Texas Attorney General Waggoner Carr. Carr specialized in business transactions, real estate, business litigation, probate, estate planning, and mediation.[1]

Early years, education, military[edit]

Carr was born in Fairlie in Hunt County near Dallas, the second of four children to Vincent Carr (1892–1983) and the former Ruth Warlick (1897–1985). The family moved to Lubbock in 1932, when Vincent Carr's bank in Fairlie failed. The Carr brothers, though they were three years apart in age, graduated in 1936 from Lubbock High School. In 1940, the two graduated with Bachelor of Arts degrees from Texas Tech University in Lubbock. Warlick's degree was in government.[2]

At both institutions, the Carr brothers excelled on the debate teams and won numerous tournaments. After Texas Tech, Warlick Carr entered Columbia University Law School in New York City but transferred after one year to the University of Texas School of Law in Austin, which Waggoner was attending. Warlick graduated with honors in April 1947 with a Doctor of Jurisprudence degree.[3]

His law school education was interrupted by three and a half years of service in the United States Army Air Corps, the forerunner of the Air Force. Carr entered as a private and was discharged as a captain in the Intelligence Corps. Returning to UT, Carr was elected to The Chancellors and to the Order of the Coif and served as student editor of the Texas Law Review.[3]

Private law practice[edit]

Upon graduation, he and Waggoner started their own firm in Lubbock under the name Carr & Carr. When Waggoner was elected county attorney of Lubbock County, Warlick joined the existing Lubbock firm of Bradley & Keys. In 1960, Warlick Carr became an organizing member of the firm of Key, Carr, Carr & Clark, a firm that stayed in existence, under varying names, until 2000. In that year he joined the firm of Mullin, Hoard & Brown, LLP, with offices in the Wells Fargo Center,[4] where he remained until his death.[3]

In 1962, Carr was one of the attorneys who tried the only civil suit against Billie Sol Estes, a Pecos financier accused of fraud and misrepresentation. Carr directed the filing of some thirty lawsuits in a 24-hour period at a time when such matters were produced on a manual typewriter.[5][6]

Carr was recognized in 1991 by the Lubbock County Bar Association as a "Distinguished Senior Lawyer". In 1998, he was named the "Outstanding 50-Year Lawyer" by the Texas Bar Foundation. A former president of Lubbock Rotary International, Carr was a Paul Harris Fellow, a prestigious award named for the founder of Rotary.[3]

Carr was a member of the State Board of Law Examiners from 1977–1997 and was the chairman of the board for the last six years of his tenure. He was the second longest-serving attorney on the board. At the time of Carr's death, John Simpson, chairman of the Board of Law Examiners, recalled that the meticulous Carr was never seen without a suit and tie and never removed his jacket when he was in the office.[5]

Carr was admitted to practice in all state courts, in the United States District Court for Northern District of Texas, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit, and the United States Supreme Court. Carr was a member of the Canadian River Municipal Water Authority, the Lubbock Area Foundation, Lubbock Symphony Board, the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce, and the Lubbock Board of City Development. He was a member of the First United Methodist Church of Lubbock and the Methodist Hospital Foundation.[3]

The Carrs were originally Democrats. Waggonner Carr carried the Democratic banner against Republican U.S. Senator John G. Tower in the 1966 campaign. However, prior to his death, Warlick Carr was a donor to John Cornyn, the Republican who holds the same Senate seat that Tower first won in 1961. In the 2008 general election, Cornyn easily defeated the Democratic State Representative Rick Noriega of Harris County.[7]


On April 30, 1949, Carr married the former Billilee "Bee" Ragan (July 28, 1923–April 18, 2010), an interior designer originally from Big Spring, Texas, the daughter of Rex and Dorothy Ragan. She attended elementary school in Big Spring and moved to Sweetwater, where she graduated in 1940 from Sweetwater High School. She then attended Texas Tech and the University of Denver in Denver, Colorado. She was a draftsman for an oil company and then a designer for the former Decorator's Studio in Lubbock as well as an active community figure.[8]

The Carrs had two children, Leanne Carr and husband Robert Benedict Meyer, Jr. (born ca. 1943), of Lake Forest, Illinois, and Bradley Warlick Carr and wife Patti Ann (both born ca. 1956) of Horseshoe Bay, and three granddaughters, Mallory and Lindsey Meyer, and Natalie Carr Sartell and husband Ryan. The marriage of Leanne Carr and Bob Meyer, originally from McConnelsville, Ohio, was carried in The New York Times on September 19, 1982. It was his second marriage, the first having ended in divorce. At the time of the marriage, Meyer was vice president of the World Banking Group of the Chemical Bank in New York City.[9] Carr also had a brother, Dr. Robert L. Carr and wife Betty; a sister, Virginia Campbell Carter and husband Bill, all of Lubbock, and sister-in-law, Ernestine Story Carr (born 1920) of Austin, the widow of Waggoner Carr.[5]

Death and legacy[edit]

In April 2008, Carr broke a leg, and physicians discovered his body to have been permeated with cancer. He died three months later at his Lubbock residence. His brother had also died of cancer four years earlier, after having survived a decade with the disease.[5]

Donald Hunt (born June 22, 1934),[1] who practiced law with Carr for forty-seven years, described his colleague as "my mentor. He had respect for the law and translated that to others." According to the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, Carr was best known for having been "detail-oriented and meticulous in his preparation for trial [and for his] attributes [of] integrity, honesty and class." Hunt called his friend "the pole star to which all other attorneys should be measured. He was the one that shined brightest in the heavens."[5]

The Carrs are interred at Resthaven Cemetery in Lubbock.[8]

Lubbock attorney George Gilkerson said that Carr was "an outstanding person, a pillar of integrity, and [we] likely won't ever see someone like him again. think we lost a giant of a lawyer and a very true advocate. He was very well thought of -- even by his foes."[5]