William Freeman Horsley, (11/24/1939-4/27/2023) passed away in Opelika, Al after a short illness at the age of 83. Bill was the son of Robert and Ellen Horsley of Opelika, Al. He is survived by Marilyn Horsley, his wife of 30 years, Stewart Horsley (son), Ellen Thomas (daughter), Richard Horsley (son), and Jonathan Crew (stepson) as well as 14 grandchildren and 1 great grandchild.
Bill graduated from Opelika High School, The University of Alabama (BA 1962) and The University of Alabama School of Law (LLB 1964). In law school, he was a member of Phi Delta Phi, Farrah Order of Jurisprudence and The Board of Editors, Alabama Law Review (1963-1964). He began his law career at Lyons, Pipes and Cook, a prestigious law firm in Mobile, Alabama. He later returned to his hometown, Opelika, where he joined the law firm of Samford, Denson LLP. He remained in Lee County, Alabama for the remainder of his life.
Bill served for 10 years on the Opelika City Schools Board of Education, was a member of The Alabama State Bar, the American Bar Association, the Lee County Bar Association and the Association of Defense Trial Attorneys. He was an accomplished and dedicated attorney and represented numerous national corporations, primarily in insurance defense litigation. He was a perennial recipient in the "Best Lawyers in America" peer review publication. He was a gifted, eloquent and agile trial attorney and sustained the highest integrity and ethical standards throughout his career. His career included a landmark divorce case that he argued before the United States Supreme Court. The case changed the constitutionality of Alabama divorce laws and is now taught in law schools across the country. It was the only divorce case he ever handled.
Bill was an avid golfer and Alabama football fan. He was a loving father, grandfather and great grandfather and will be dearly missed by countless family members and friends.
Memorials in Bill’s memory may be made to the Food Bank of East Alabama, 355 Industry Drive, Auburn, AL 36832.