Louis Adams Bledsoe, Jr.

December 25, 2019

CHARLOTTE - Louis Adams Bledsoe, Jr. died after a brief illness on the evening of December 25, 2019 at his home at Southminster Retirement Community in Charlotte.  A service to celebrate his life will be held on Sunday, December 29 at 2:00 PM at Myers Park United Methodist Church, 1501 Queens Road, Charlotte, NC  28207.  The family will greet friends in Jubilee Hall following the service.

Lou was born on November 17, 1927 in Huntsville, Alabama, the oldest of three sons of the late Louis Adams Bledsoe and Bessie Lee Baker Bledsoe.  Lou and his younger brothers, Ted and Ron, grew up in Huntsville during trying economic times. Lou was a leader at an early age and an outstanding athlete.  He held leadership positions in student government, was a Huntsville city tennis champion, and earned All State accolades and numerous college scholarships for his football talents.

Upon graduation from Huntsville High School in 1946, Lou joined the U.S. Marine Corps and was stationed at Cherry Point, North Carolina.  His play on the base football team gained him a scholarship to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he was a proud member of UNC’s Charlie Justice-era football teams from 1947 to 1949, a football era still recognized as UNC’s best and a group of friends that Lou cherished the rest of his life.  At UNC, Lou was a member of the Sigma Chi fraternity and the National Society of Scabbard and Blade as a member of the US Air Force ROTC.  In 1950, Lou entered UNC’s law school but was called to active duty as an Air Force officer during the Korean War, serving for two years, including a year at Kimpo Air Force Base near Seoul, South Korea.  After returning to UNC in 1953, Lou graduated in 1955 with a law degree (LLB) and a degree in business administration.  While in law school, Lou was a member of the Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, was elected Chief Justice of the Law School Honor Court and was a member of the Board of Editors of the North Carolina Law Review. 

Lou began his legal career in 1955 in Charlotte with his mentor, Maurice Weinstein, and practiced in the profession that he loved for 58 years, all in Charlotte, retiring at age 86 in 2013.  He enjoyed a general practice, including in the areas of civil litigation, tax, corporate and business law, and trusts and estates, and was recognized as an outstanding lawyer of high character and distinction.  Lou was a great teacher and mentor to many, and his patience, empathy, and good judgment made him an effective and sought-after mediator and arbitrator.  Lou was an active member of the Mecklenburg County, North Carolina, and American Bar Associations and served each in various leadership capacities, including as a member of the North Carolina Bar Association’s Board of Governors and as Chair of its General Practice Section.  In 1995, he was elected to the North Carolina Bar Association’s General Practice Hall of Fame.  The highlight of his legal career was practicing law with his youngest daughter, Margaret, in the law firm of Bledsoe & Bledsoe PLLC from 1993 until her untimely and tragic death in 1996.

Lou was a member of his beloved church, Myers Park United Methodist Church, for 64 years.  There he met the love of his life, the former Martha Eveann Hurlocker, and raised his three children. He was a loyal and dedicated leader in the Church, serving both locally and statewide in a variety of leadership roles, including multiple terms as Chair of the Church’s Administrative Board, and culminating in his selection as an Honorary Life Member of the Board.  His greatest passion, however, was as a teacher of the Ownbey Sunday School Class, a role he held for 56 years. His children and grandchildren were privileged to watch Lou teach his last class—his traditional Christmas lesson and readings—in December 2017 at age 90. 

Lou was also very active in the larger Charlotte community.  Notable among those activities were his service as Chair and member of the Board of Trustees of Charlotte Country Day School, President of the Board of the Oratorio Singers of Charlotte, President and member of the Board of Charlotte Community Concert Association, and Life Member of the Shrine Bowl Board of Governors.  Lou was also a member of the Horace Williams Philosophy Club, The Charlotte City Club, and the Charlotte Country Club, and an active Shriner. 

While Lou’s life was busy with professional, church, and civic responsibilities, his love for his family surpassed all. He made time for all his children’s and grandchildren’s many activities, and he delighted in their achievements, both big and small.  He was the patriarch of a loving and tight-knit family who loved him dearly and to whom he taught so much.

Lou was an avid reader, a life-long learner, and a natural born teacher and advisor.  Lou enjoyed people, and people instinctively liked Lou. He warmed every room he entered with his smile and the ever-present twinkle in his eye.  He was an active listener and gave advice without judgment, inspired without platitudes, and was strong without bluster.  He built people up and never tore people down.  Lou was kind and caring, loved to laugh, and always focused on the good in life, never more so than in dealing with the deaths of his youngest daughter and his beloved wife. He was a nice and decent man of great and abiding faith, and he lived out that faith daily in his treatment of others and the way he chose to live his life.  Lou was the consummate gentleman and, rare for his generation, a gentle man.  His cheerful optimism, practical judgment, considered wisdom, zest for life, and Christian example are among the many qualities that made Lou a role model for his family and the many who knew and loved him.

Lou was preceded in death by his parents, his wife of almost 61 years, Martha, and his daughter, Margaret. He is survived by his son, Judge Louis Bledsoe, III and his wife, Suzanne and their children Dr. Carol (Sean) Jones, Louis Bledsoe, IV, and Kathleen Bledsoe; his daughter Dr. Mary Martha Felkner and her husband Pete and their children Jack, David and Catherine; his brothers Ron (Marge) and Ted (Adaline) of Huntsville, Alabama; his sister-in-law Margo McGee and her husband, JC, of Asheville, NC; as well as many beloved nieces and nephews.

The family is deeply grateful for the love and care shown Lou and his family by the wonderful staff at both Southminster Retirement Community and Hospice & Palliative Care-Charlotte Region. 

In lieu of flowers, a gift in Lou’s memory may be made to Myers Park United Methodist Church, 1501 Queens Road, Charlotte NC  28207 or Charlotte Country Day School, 1440 Carmel Road, Charlotte NC  28226.   

Arrangements are in the care of Kenneth W. Poe Funeral & Cremation Service, 1321 Berkeley Ave., Charlotte, NC 28204; (704) 641-7606. Online condolences can be shared at www.kennethpoeservices.com.



Share your memories & condolences


  • Margaret Stewart

    Lou was a godly man, good friend, great lawyer....he was such a big help to me when my husband died in 2010. He has left a great legacy for his children and family....oh how we need so many men like Lou.

    Margaret Stewart

  • Ed Pickett

    Lou was a true raconteur and a gentleman.
    He did always bring all eyes to him when he commented at the Horace Williams Philosophers Club and gave me a few personal bits of his wisdom and humor over occasional lunches at the city club.
    I'll miss you, Lou

  • Linda Faggart

    Mr. Bledsoe was a great example of a true gentleman. His sweet spirit was surpassed only by the genuine smile he gave everyone and the twinkle in his eye as he gave you that smile. As the former nanny for his daughter, Mary Martha Felkner of almost 14 years, he was always so kind and nice to me and interested in my life. He was truly a joy to be around! He will be greatly missed, but the memories of his loving spirit will live on. May God bless the family with wonderful memories as you grieve the loss of this extraordinary man! Linda Faggart (AKA Ms. Linda)

  • Jim & Nancy Hatfield

    Lou was a great role model, a man I respected and truly admired. He was the reason that Nancy and I joined the Ownbey Sunday School Class. We were privileged to hear Lou teach the class many times. We always looked forward to his Christmas readings. It was ironic that, on Christmas day this year, we had our family at our house and I read "Keeping Christmas" by Henry Van dyke , a piece that Lou read on many Christmases. I had a great deal of trouble getting through the reading as we knew Lou was in hospice care. He will be sorely missed.

  • Joani Brown

    To my mentor, boss and friend. You were such a huge part of my life for 15 years. I have missed you. But I have been truly blessed to have known you and your wonderful family. Peace and love, Joani Brown

  • Bain Jones

    Lou Bledsoe was the consummate lawyer. He was a scholar, mentor, mediator, advocate and counselor. He loved his family and friends. He loved Myers Park Methodist Church especially his Sunday School class. His portrayal of Dietrich Bonhoeffer revealed a true servant leader. Everyone loved his wit and eloquent remarks. I was blessed to have him as my uncle.