Born April 3, 1878, in Somerset, Ky., Judge Walter Raleigh Ely came to Callahan County with his parents in 1895. Largely self-educated, he entered the profession of law and had a distinguished career. He served as County Attorney and County Judge of Callahan County, and as judge of the 42nd District Court which included this county in its jurisdiction. In 1927 Governor Dan Moody named Judge Ely as one of three members of the Texas Highway Commission. He served until 1935, under four governors, half of that time as chairman. He played a major role in making the Texas Highway Department and the State Highway System what they are today. After retiring from the commission, he was one of Abilene's most distinguished attorneys for many years. He was privileged to see his efforts on the Highway Commission bear fruit in the highway system we have today. He died January 31, 1978, only two months shy of his 100th birthday.