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Congress renames post office for former attorney
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Kay Flowers-Johnson, U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Savannah), Darcy Flowers and Nancy "Nan" Flowers applaud after getting their first look at the plaque that will be placed inside the Hinesville Post Office. The building will now be called the John Sidney 'Sid' Flowers Post Office. - photo by Andrea Washington / Coastal Courier

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Kay Flowers-Johnson, daughter of late attorney and judge J. Sidney Flowers, talks about the "magical" trips to the post office she and sister had with their father.
Courtroom A of the Liberty County Courthouse was filled to capacity Monday when family, friends and colleagues came out to remember former State Court Solicitor J. Sidney Flowers as he received a rare honor from the U.S. Postal Service.
The USPS ceremony officially dedicate the Hinesville Post Office to the late attorney and judge, renaming the largest post office in the county the John Sidney 'Sid' Flowers Post Office.
And according to those in attendance, the tribute is more than befitting of a man who meant so much to the community.
"Sidney was a paragon of integrity," Sampie Smith, a longtime friend said. "People knew him to be a man of his word."
Flowers was born in Liberty County on Dec. 22, 1931. Other than his years at Mercer University and Mercer Law School in Macon and a two-year stint with the U.S. Army, he was a lifelong resident.
He graduated from law school at the top of his class, but rather than head for Atlanta, he to returned to his hometown "where he did not do as well as he could have if he would've taken the big corporate jobs," U.S. Rep. Jack Kingston (R-Savannah) said.
Lack of a corporate firm, however, did not hamper Flowers' ability to rise through the professional ranks. He served as solicitor general for more than three decades and Midway city attorney for over two decades.
But it was not the career accomplishments of the "hometown boy" that made him a fixture in Liberty County. It was his charitable work with local organizations and the less fortunate that got the most praise.
"Sidney was a man who did an awful lot of pro bono work, not just for First Presbyterian Church and the (First Presbyterian Christian Academy) but also for folks that just needed the help," Smith said. "He loved to do things for people."
Smith added that it also was not uncommon for Flowers to pick-up the tab for any soldiers who happened to be eating in the same restaurant as him.
Politically, Flowers was very influential in forming the Liberty County Republican Party and became a go-to-guy for young GOP politicians like Smith, Kingston and Georgia Senate President Pro Tempore Eric Johnson.
The lawyer, judge, philanthropist and activist did not stop sharing what he could with others until he died on Aug. 21, 2006, after years of declining health.
Kingston, who sponsored legislation to rename the post office to honor Flowers, said working to get the measure passed "on behalf of a good man and great man" was gratifying.
"There are a lot of things you do in politics that are fun and many things you do are frustrating," Kingston said. "But this has been really rewarding to work on because he was just such a grand man and we all love him."
Speaking for the Flowers family, Kay Flowers-Johnson, one of the late attorney's two daughters, thanked those in attendance for continually supporting her family. She talked about her father's relationship with the post office.
"For him it was more than just a place where you receive and send mail. It was the heart and soul of his hometown," she said. "It's where he ran into folks, asked about their health and their family. It's where he got the news, where he interacted with the world."
She also remembered how Flowers made Sunday trips to pick up the mail "magical" for her and her sister, Darcy, when they were children.
"I can remember one very hot Sunday afternoon going into this cool place, so mysterious and official and there were all these tiny little boxes, doors on the wall. And Daddy had a key," Flowers-Johnson said. "And he could open one of those little windows on a Sunday when the post office was closed. Inside of this little box there were very important documents, correspondence from all over the world. It was a wonderful experience as a child."
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