Matt Dawson, 98, Feb. 17 in Waco. The son of the pastor of First Baptist Church of Waco, J.M. Dawson, he was a graduate of Baylor University and university’s law school and bore the nickname “Mad Dog” Dawson. After opening a law office in Longview, at age 26 he became at that time the youngest judge ever to sit on a Texas bench.After a tour of duty as a medical corpsman with the U.S. Navy during World War II, he joined a law office in Corsicana. In 1972, after 35 years of legal practice, he was asked to fill the Leon Jaworski Chair in Practice and Procedure at Baylor Law School. He retired from academia in 1983 and resumed his trial practice for another two decades. Twice each year, Baylor Law School awards the “Mad Dog,” an 18-inch bronze statuette of Matt Dawson, to the winner of the Wortham Top Gun mini-trial competition. A life-size bronze statue depicting Dawson delivering a summation to a jury is located outside the practice court classroom at the law school. A professorship has been founded in his name. He was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Princess Louise. He is survived by his daughters, Donna Fisher, Rebecca Brumley and Carol Dawson; sons, Mark and John; 16 grandchildren; and 10 great-grandchildren.
Bob Freeman, 76, Feb. 3 in Mandeville, La. He was pastor of churches in Mississippi, Texas and Louisiana. He also was pastor of English-speaking Baptist churches in Germany affiliated with the European Baptist Convention, including Immanuel Baptist Church in Kaiserslautern. He was elected president of the European Baptist Convention and was coordinator for the European Congress on Evangelism. He retired as pastor of First Baptist Church of Mandeville in 1993. He is survived by his wife, Diane; daughters, Angela Freeman and Annette Sutherland, son, Richard; and five grandchildren.