Posted on September 28, 2009 in Personal Injury
On the morning of October 17, 2008, the McCamy, Phillips, Tuggle & Fordham law office was destroyed by a bomb. For nearly a year since that day, Dalton attorney James Fordham has kept a broken clock from his office there, forever frozen at 9:55 AM, the very moment of the explosion.
That morning, a 78 year old Dalton resident, Lloyd Cantrell, had initially rammed the firm’s building on its north side with his SUV full of explosives. When his first attempt failed, he set off an explosive device at the library window in the back of the building. Mr. Cantrell was killed in the explosion, and four others were injured. Attorney Jim Phillips, who had been the one who tried to reason with Cantrell before the man set off the explosive, was in the Joseph M. Still Burn Center in Augusta, GA. for a few months. Thankfully, he is now back home in Dalton.
The firm quickly found temporary office space on the third floor of Dalton City Hall, and this Monday, September 28, 2009, the attorneys and staff of McCamy, Phillips, Tuggle & Fordham will return to the updated and remodeled historic building on West Crawford Street in Dalton.
President and CEO of the Dalton-Whitfield Chamber of Commerce, Brian Anderson, said he’s glad to see his good friends returning to their office.
Dalton Police Chief Jason Parker said the firm’s move back to its old building helps Dalton "return to some state of normal." He added, "I’m sure it really feels good to them," he said.
Attorney Robert Smalley described the move back, saying, "It feels … like turning the page and a new beginning, but in an old, familiar place."
“It feels wonderful, it’s going home,” said attorney Lee Daniel. "It makes you realize just how fortunate you are. The city has been great. We’ve had Cadillac offices and facilities. We really didn’t miss a beat almost in practicing law.”
"We’ve stuck together and done well," said attorney Sam Sanders. "I really think the members of our firm and our staff have all become closer."
Attorney Fordham said returning to his office of 40 years conjures up memories. "It feels like you’ve been off somewhere and you’re coming home," he said.
Some of the improvements will go nearly unnoticed, such as new wiring and up-to-date fire equipment. Other changes that we made to the building include a wheelchair ramp, a larger kitchen space, and a back porch was enclosed so that there is more space for the firm’s secretaries. In the upstairs bathroom, the renovation takes on a lighter tone. The bathroom has been painted bright red as a tribute to the Georgia Bulldogs.
The general practice law firm serves Dalton and the surrounding communities such as Atlanta, Dunwoody, and Alpharetta. Since 1932, the firm has been helping the community of Dalton in many capacities. The current attorneys practice personal injury law, wrongful death law, criminal defense, workers’ compensation, real estate law, insurance law, banking law, business and local government law, as well as family and divorce law.
Mr. Smalley noted the attorneys and employees have experienced an outpouring of support from the community, and the Dalton law firm is planning a barbecue to honor emergency responders who helped on the day of the bombing. The firm also is planning a community open house, and will take part in the Family Crisis Center tour of homes around Christmas.
McCamy, Phillips, Tuggle & Fordham – Georgia Law Firm
300 Waugh Street
Dalton, Georgia 30720
Toll Free: 1-866-959-9483On the morning of October 17, 2008, the McCamy, Phillips, Tuggle & Fordham law office was destroyed by a bomb. For nearly a year since that day, Dalton attorney James Fordham has kept a broken clock from his office there, forever frozen at 9:55 AM, the very moment of the explosion.