Condolences to friends and family of E. Wyc Orr, Brenau benefactor and supporter

E. Wyc Orr Sr. passed away on Wednesday, May 28.
E. Wyc Orr Sr. passed away on Wednesday, May 28.

Longtime Gainesville, Georgia, trial lawyer and former Georgia legislator E. Wycliffe “Wyc” Orr Sr. died Wednesday, May 28, after a battle with cancer. He was 67.

Orr and his wife, Lyn Harden Orr, established the Aileen Grace and Emogene Gaskins Women’s Studies Endowment at Brenau in honor of their mothers. Proceeds from the endowment were first used in 2008 to bring to the Gainesville campus the documentary filmmaker Rory Kennedy, the youngest daughter of former U.S. Sen. Robert Kennedy, who was also appointed U.S. Attorney General in the cabinet of his brother, President John F. Kennedy.

Orr established the firm Orr & Brown in Gainesville in 1981. Its offices are located at the corner of Spring and Pryor streets in Gainesville at the edge of the Brenau campus. The unassuming friendly, gregarious Orr and his colleagues frequently ate lunch among students at the Brenau campus cafeteria.

The Tifton native, a life-long, unapologetic Democrat, served as a member of the Georgia General Assembly and occasionally was mentioned as a potential candidate for higher office. However, the one-time U.S. Army lawyer was best known as a legal advocate who represented both defendants and plaintiffs in federal and state courts. Last month the Southern Center for Human Rights said Orr, a founding member of the Georgia Public Defender Standards Council, would receive its 2014 Lifetime Achievement Award for “his leadership in building and fortifying Georgia’s public defender system, and his courage in speaking up on behalf of those who cannot.”

Little & Davenport Funeral Home in Gainesville in charge of arrangements. Located at 355 Dawsonville Highway SW. Visit for more information as it is available.