Judge Oliver L. Green, Jr., 88, passed away peacefully at his home in Lakeland, FL, on Wednesday, August 25, 2021.
Oliver was born November 19, 1932, at Fort Moultrie on Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina. Born into a military family, his call of duty was always strong as a young man. He enlisted in the U.S. Army three days after graduating from high school in 1950 at age 17.
He was trained as an infantryman, and volunteered for duty in the Korean War. He distinguished himself in combat in North Korea, and for one particular engagement, he was awarded the Silver Star for “gallantry in action.” In February, 1951, he sustained extensive wounds when an artillery shell landed an estimated five yards from him, causing shrapnel wounds to his left hand, arm, and thigh. He spent the next 20 months in Army hospitals. He was awarded several medals, including the Purple Heart for his injuries.
After discharge from Army service, Oliver enrolled in the University of Alabama, earning a degree in Commerce and Business Administration. He continued his education at the Stetson University College of Law, earning his Juris Doctor Degree in 1958. He subsequently entered into the general practice of law with the Oxford & Oxford law firm in Lakeland, FL.
He became a Municipal Judge for the City of Lakeland in 1971. Later in 1971, he was appointed Polk County Magistrate Judge, and held that position until elected Circuit Judge in January, 1973. As Circuit Judge, he served in every division of the 10th Judicial Circuit, including two terms as Chief Judge. In 1998, he was appointed to the Second District Court of Appeals, where he served until his retirement in 2002. He became a Senior Judge and continued to serve on the bench, and later enjoyed working as a certified mediator.
Oliver was always an avid outdoorsman and enjoyed shooting sports. He also had a great fascination with history, particularly military history, and maintained an impressive library of military history books. He was a long-time member of the Citrus Center Kiwanis Club, All Saints Episcopal Church, and remained active in many legal and veterans organizations.
Oliver was married to the love of his life, Mona Rowell Green, for 57 years. She preceded him in death in 2017. He is survived by sisters Nancy Poole, Birmingham, AL, and Patricia Armistead, Atlanta, GA; daughters Jacki Green Hill (Michael Hill), Lakeland, FL, Mary Catherine Green, Lakeland, FL, and Miriam P. Green, New York, NY; grandchildren Allison Hill Hinkle (Daniel), Tampa, FL, Michael Hill, Jr. (Kourtni), Palm Harbor, FL, and Margaret Janutolo, Lakeland, FL; and great-grandchildren Riley Hinkle, Grant Hinkle, and Sophia Hinkle, Tampa, FL.
At Oliver’s request, a private service for family members will be held at All Saints Episcopal Church in Lakeland, FL. A public memorial service may also be scheduled in the future. Condolences may be sent to the family at Heath Funeral Chapel.