Charles Guthrie "Gus" Wylie, who practiced law for more than 50 years and played drums as part of a local big band, died Monday at Central Baptist Hospital. He was 76.
Mr. Wylie began his career in the law firm of Wylie and Sloan, where his uncle and a Lexington mayor, the late Charlie Wylie, was a partner. He joined the firm of Gess, Mattingly and Atchinson in 1982 and practiced there until retirement.
Lexington attorney John Morgan was a longtime friend of Mr. Wylie and attended law school with him.
"He could oppose you vigorously without being offensive," he said. "He was highly respected by the bar."
Mr. Wylie also became known around town as the drummer for the Men of Note Big Band, a group he played in for 28 years.
"He knew how to phrase with big bands," said Byron Romanowitz, who plays tenor saxophone with the group. "He liked big bands. He liked Stan Kenton in particular."
Mr. Wylie's former wife Kathy Gentry, with whom he had two sons, said they remained good friends. She said his honesty was one of his best traits.
"He was filled with integrity," she said. "Always doing the right thing."
Mr. Wylie, a native of Nicholasville, also was known for his dry wit, gourmet cooking abilities, golfing prowess and love of animals.
Talk radio host Sue Wylie, who was married to Mr. Wylie for 14 years, said his cats — Maynard, Zookie, Grayson and Andy — were like family to him.
He is survived by a son, Gregory Rupert Wylie. Another son, Charles Geoffrey Wylie, died earlier.
Although he was well-liked, Mr. Wylie "was sort of a lonely man, too," Sue Wylie said. "I just wish Gus had known in his life how many people liked him and how much they liked him and respected him.
"He had many more fans than he knew."
The funeral will be 4 p.m. Thursday at Kerr Brothers Funeral Home on Main Street. Visitation will begin one hour before the funeral.