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was born in Brownwood, Texas on July 25, 1947. He graduated from Florida Southern College in 1969 with a major in government and a minor in history. Mr. Long graduated from college as a “Distinguished Military Graduate” in the ROTC Department.
Prior to beginning his legal career, Mr. Long was a commissioned officer in the Intelligence Branch of the United States Army, rising to the rank of Captain.
Mr. Long is a graduate of the Armor School at Fort Knox, Kentucky where he qualified as a tank platoon leader. Mr. Long graduated from the Fort Benning, Georgia Airborne School where he qualified as an Airborne Parachutist. Later, Mr. Long graduated from the John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center where he became a “Full Flash” Green Beret.
In 1970, Mr. Long volunteered to serve in Vietnam with the United States Army. There he was the Executive Officer of a Kit Carson Training School where he taught North Vietnamese and Viet Cong deserters to work with American Troops in combat operations. Later, Mr. Long volunteered to be an aerial observer and flew 25 combat missions over the Ho Chi Minh Trail.
Mr. Long has received, among other military awards, the Army Commendation Medal and the Bronze Star for meritorious achievement in ground operations against hostile forces in Vietnam. After his service in Vietnam, Mr. Long remained in the United States Army Reserves while he attended Law School.
After graduating from the Marshall-Wythe School of Law at the College of William and Mary in 1974, Mr. Long began his private practice in Hampton, Virginia, with the law firm of Montague, Montague and Long.
In 1989, Mr. Long formed Robert E. Long and Associates, Ltd., where he continues to emphasize his civil and criminal practice including divorce, custody, wills and estate planning, personal injury, elder law, products liability, business and commercial law. Mr. Long established the firm’s moto of providing “personal attention to your legal needs” recognizing that the practice of law is not just a business.
Rather, the practice of law involves individuals who are hurting, afraid and in need of compassionate, personal service. It is to that end that the lawyers and staff at Robert E. Long & Associates, Ltd. have devoted their lives.
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When Mr. Long started practicing law in 1974, his partner was mayor of the City of Hampton and the downtown Hampton area was in a state of steep decline in need of urban renewal. The downtown area was filed with empty, obsolete office buildings constructed following the Civil War.
Mr. Long saw an opportunity to contribute to the City of Hampton by helping rebuild the urban corridor along Queen’s Way. In 1978, Mr. Long and his wife began buying these empty office buildings and restoring them to first class condition. These restored office buildings were the spark that ignited downtown Hampton’s rebirth.
Mr. Long’s business, Long Properties, LLC, has provided quality accommodations for lawyers, doctors, certified public accountants, insurance companies, government contractors, New York Stock Exchange brokers, an oil company, medical billing offices, beauty salons, multiple high quality retail speciality and clothing shops, fine restaurants and other professional businesses. In fact, Long Properties, LLC has even provided the Federal Government with a formal courtroom.
Mr. Long has served, in varying capacities, in the Hampton Bar Association and, in 2001, became the President of the Hampton Bar Association. Mr. Long has also been a member of the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association and the American Trial Lawyers Association.
He is qualified to practice in both Federal and State Courts and is licensed by the Supreme Court of Virginia and the United States Supreme Court. During his long career, Mr. Long has been the lead attorney in many important cases.
Two of his cases now help define Virginia law: Hayman v. Patio Products, 226 VA. 482 (1984) clarified the covenant not to sue statute in Virginia. This clarification of Virginia law plays an important part in personal injury litigation to this day.
In Sateren v. Montgomery Ward, 234 VA. 303 (1987), the Supreme Court of Virginia held that a private debtor was not required to show actual, out-of-pocket damage in a libel action against a non-media creditor. This is an important case in libel law in Virginia.
Mr. Long has served as President of the Hampton Historical Society, is active in his church and has been active in the Boy Scouts of America. Mr. Long has been a guest lecturer for the Virginia Trial Lawyers Association (an association of lawyers primarily representing plaintiffs in civil litigation) and the Virginia Association of Defense Attorneys (an association of lawyers primarily representing defendants in civil litigation).
Mr. Long is a member in good standing of the Phi Delta Phi legal fraternity, the American Bar Association and the Virginia State Bar. Mr. Long is a frequent lecturer on wills, estates and elder law at various venues throughout the Virginia Peninsula. In addition, he has served as an officer of the Virginia Legal Aid Society.
Mr. Long had the first case in the nation that stood for the proposition that heavy duty trucks had to provide some roll-over protection for the cab occupants. Based upon that first case, two years later he was associated in the second such case, a Texas wrongful death case testing the same proposition. After a 17 ½ day jury trial, Mr. Long’s client, the window of the decapitated truck driver, prevailed.
Mr. Long is the author of the book Trial Lawyer which is a compilation of true stories from his law practice. His book is available through his office.