MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - Mourners gathered Friday to celebrate the life and legacy of Rev. Judge W. Otis Higgs, Jr.
"A lawyer, a fighter, a civil rights leader, a pioneer in politics, a judge, a pastor, you name it. Any avenue of a role model you would want, you had it in him," said Memphis Mayor A C Wharton.
The mayor was one of many in the community who attended the funeral of Memphis Judge Otis Higgs Jr. at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church.
"I remember he was such a wonderful person," said Coria Williams.
Higgs served as Shelby County's first and only black sheriff. In 1970 he was appointed judge and served until 1975. He was re-elected in 1998 and served until his untimely death.
"I met Judge Higgs as a lawyer and I just always admired him. As a matter of fact I wanted to be like Judge Higgs," said State Representative Joe Towns Jr.
Hundreds attended the homegoing service. Long time friend Birteal Benson says she'll never forget the gift he gave her.
"I loved him and he loved us, and he gave me my first television. Hooked it up and put it on the internet. So we was just great, great friends," she said.
"Pastor Higgs was a personal friend, he was a public friend, he was a friend of Memphis. Otis Higgs was a friend of the universe," said Stella Hollis.