Veterans Day and a Centennial Birthday

Today, on Veterans Day, we honor Tom Morris and his service to the United States in World War II. We also wish him a happy 100th birthday tomorrow!

Mr. Morris has practiced law for more than 70 years. He began practicing at Underwood Law Firm in 2003. Primarily a litigation lawyer, Morris started law school at the University of Texas in 1939 after only two years at junior college. 

He was a senior in law school when he was called to serve as a Navy Airman. Morris was on combat duty in the Western Pacific flying dive bombers when he and his carrier “Ticonderoga” survived an attack by two kamikazes in the Formosa Strait. 

After the end of the war, he returned to law school at UT. He was a member of the Chancellors and Order of the Coif and served on the editorial staff of the Texas Law Review. 

Mr. Morris graduated in June 1946 and joined the faculty teaching torts, property and legal argument and writing. He taught 1 year in the first and only “separate but equal law school” for blacks at UT.

He commenced the practice of law in Harlingen, Texas in June 1948. Mr. Morris and his wife moved to Amarillo in September 1949 because he was looking for a good place to practice law and Amarillo “looked like a good place”.

Mr. Morris still practices law 4 to 6 hours a day/4 to 5 days a week and says he has had a busy career all the way through. 

“I don’t feel any different than I did before,” Tom said about celebrating his 100th birthday. “I don’t count my days. I just go about my business.”

Thank you for your service, Mr. Morris. 

This article originally appeared in the Amarillo Globe News newspaper on November 11, 2019, as seen in the photograph to the right. 

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