The day after Hamilton County General Sessions Judge Ron Durby notified state officials that he is stepping down, he released a public statement saying he hopes his absence won't last long.
Durby said he's leaving the bench because of a disability, though he has not publicly specified what it is. He said in the statement he hoped treatment would allow him to resume his duties soon.
"I am experiencing some physical difficulties which affect my exercising the duties of General Sessions Court judge," Durby wrote. "I am currently undergoing testing and treatment in hopes I can soon return to the bench."
Durby wrote to Gov. Bill Haslam's office Monday, asking that someone be named to his seat.
He was appointed to the Sessions Court bench in 1996. Before that, he was clerk and master of Chancery Court for 10 years.
In his statement, Durby said he and his wife, Vicka, "have been deeply touched and humbled by the number of calls expressing well wishes and we ask for your prayers and support concerning this difficult but necessary decision."