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2013: A look back…

By Kay S. Pedrotti Barnesville and Lamar County continued to move in positive directions during 2013, led by concerned public officials, dedicated volunteers, outstanding fire and police personnel ‘“ and a stellar Lamar County high Trojans football team. The year started on a happy note when Carter Altman, 3, was rescued safely after falling into an abandoned well. Fire and police personnel could not descend to Carter lest the sides of the hole collapse, so fire chief Steve Andrews sent down a looped rope, tightening it against Carter’s arm as he reached up, and pulled the toddler to safety. County commissioner Charles Glass became Outstanding Citizen of the Year and in late December announced his intention to run for commission chair in 2014. The county tax commissioner’s office was moved to the old water authority building on Country Kitchen Road and a new homestead exemption was added for seniors over 70 on the schools portion of property taxes. The Trojan football team went undefeated in the regular season for the third year in a row, triumphed in the first two postseason games and landed second place in Georgia Region AA after coming up short against Lovett School in the Georgia Dome. Miss Georgia, Leighton Jordan, visited here to help with the Pretty for Prom event at the high school. Arsons were prevalent in Lamar and other counties with several charges against Travis Leroy Ball, who is back in jail after breaking bond several times. The alleged killer of popular cabbie John Dixson, Jamarris Williams, is still awaiting trial on multiple charges including felony murder. Quimby Melton Jr., longtime publisher of both The Herald Gazette and the Pike County Journal Reporter, died in 2013. Barnesville also lost three centenarians, Horace Dixon, John Darden and Louise Lovejoy Jackson. Others honored for 100-plus years included Rufus Durrah, Nannie C. Haygood and Lowrannie Harp. Two longtime good citizens in Barnesville, Grady Carter and Sid Cheatham, also passed away. Controversy over a horse track, upheavals at the chamber of commerce, a kidnapped baby who was saved here, Gordon State College’s largest graduating class ever, improvements to Greenwood Cemetery, noise and tax problems with Piedmont Green Power, the 125th anniversary of Aldora Mills, record rainfalls and a new telephone weather warning system called Code Red also made the news. For a full review of how 2013 went down in Lamar, see the 12.31.2013 print edition of The Herald Gazette.

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