Richard Dunlap III
Class  of  1960
Richard  Lamb  Dunlap III

Obituary and  Tributes

Richard Dunlap III


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Former Paris mayor and longtime attorney Richard Lamb Dunlap III, 69, of Paris died Friday, June 15, 2012, at Alive Hospice of Saint Thomas Hospital in Nashville.

A graveside service is planned at 4 p.m. June 29 in Paris City Cemetery, with Trent Bullock officiating.

No visitation has been scheduled. Ridgeway Funeral Home is in charge.

Born Sept. 20, 1942, in Atlanta, he was the son of the late Richard L. Dunlap Jr. and Nancy Brown Dunlap.

A 1960 Grove High School graduate, he earned his bachelor’s degree from Vanderbilt University in 1964 and his law degree from Vanderbilt Law School in 1967.

He attended First Christian Church, was a former board member of Commercial Bank and FirstBank and the Paris Board of Public Utilities. He was a former Rotary Club member.

Survivors are one daughter: Susannah (Michael) Murphey of Paris; one son: Richard L. Dunlap IV and fiancée Tanya Brooke Swanson of Nashville; three grandchildren: Sam, Ben and Emma Jane Murphey, all of Paris; and a longtime friend: Rosann Autry of Hollow Rock.

He also was preceded in death by two sisters: Sarah Brown Dunlap in infancy and Elizabeth Dunlap Dennis.

Memorials may be made to Alive Hospice, 1718 Patterson St., Nashville 37203; Door of Hope Children’s Mission, c/o First Baptist Church, 313 N. Poplar St., Paris; or Ty2 Foundation, 4539 Trousdale Dr., Nashville 37204.

June 18, 2012

THANKS  to SKIP  COMPTON ('65)  for alerting us to this obituary.




Attorney Richard Dunlap III, who died Friday in Nashville, served Paris as mayor and city commissioner and was a history advocate.

As city mayor from 1991-93, Dunlap pushed to have downtown parking meters removed in favor of free two-hour parking. The city also experienced annexation during his term as mayor. He advocated building residential apartments for the elderly in downtown Paris.

A one-time county historian, Dunlap saw history as a tool to answering various questions in life.

“It is always difficult to know what to do in life but especially so if you do not know the history of the situation which presents you with the question,” Dunlap said.

A stone inscribed marker in front of the Paris-Henry County Heritage Center says, “In honor of Mayor Richard Dunlap III, who fully supported and aided the restoration and preservation of Historic Poplar Street. Poplar Street Neighborhood Association, 1995.”

Dunlap also pushed for sidewalks in the neighborhood.

Dunlap came from governmental stock. His father also served as Paris mayor, was on the city commission and was city attorney, in addition to operating a private law practice.

Richard Dunlap III graduated from Atkins-Porter Grade School and was a 1960 Grove High School graduate.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in 1964 from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, where he was president of Phi Kappa Sigma fraternity and earned his law degree at Vanderbilt in 1967.

He served as Airman 1st Class in the U.S. Air Force and Lt. Junior Grade (junior commissioned officer) in the U.S. Naval Reserves from 1967-76.

In addition to operating a private law practice for many years, he served as Henry County attorney from 1979-82 and as city judge from 1982-83. He was attorney for the Paris Housing Authority, Board of Public Utilities and Paris Special School District. He also was a member of the Commercial Bank & Trust Co. board of directors and later a member of the FirstBank advisory board of directors.

He was a member of the Optimist Club and Elks Lodge, as well as the Paris-Henry County Chamber of Commerce and Arts Council. He was a Friend of the Rhea Public Library and member of the Downtown Merchants Association.

June 18, 2012


History was imbedded in “Dicky” Dunlap’s bones.

His name, Richard Lamb Dunlap III, spoke of the traditions he
was born into. His family law firm was the only business in
town founded earlier than this newspaper.

Like the father whom he idolized, he graduated from Vanderbilt
University and took up the practice of law. And like his
father, he became an activist mayor of Paris, pursuing removal
of downtown parking meters and advocating residential
apartments for the elderly.

Passionate about our past

He acknowledged his passion for history: “It is always
difficult to know what to do in life, but especially so if you
do not know the history of the situation which presents you
with the question,” he once said.

The Heritage Center was founded as the result of a stroll he
and his wife took through the old Paris City Cemetery, where
notables like E.W. Grove and James D. Porter are buried.
Preserving the stories of such people is important to the life
of the community, they realized.

Dunlap held strong opinions and did not hesitate to voice them.
He was not one to back down from an argument.

He will be remembered, first and foremost, for his stubborn
passion about history

June 19, 2012


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Paris, Tennessee
June 18 & 19, 2012  Edition ~ Used by Permission

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