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Charlie Lee Bishop Sr.

Staff Written Obituaries

Charlie Lee Bishop passed away December 28, 2018 at Madison Health & Rehabilitation Center. Charlie Lee Bishop was born in Rutledge on December 15, 1926. He was a member of Macedonia Baptist Church. He was married for many years to Mattie Liza Allen Bishop until her passing in 1991. He was a faithful husband and father. Charlie Lee was a dutiful employee of the now defunct Porterdale Cotton Mill in Porterdale for many years and the defunct poultry company in Monroe. He leases behind to cherish his memory his memory …

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Mary Virginia “Gina” Barnette

Staff Written Obituaries

Mary Virginia “Gina” Barnette, 34 of Rutledge, died January 4, 2019. She was at home surrounded by her family. Gina was born on February 5, 1984 in Conyers. She grew up in Morgan County. She was a member of Social Circle Baptist Church. Gina loved animals and worked as Vet Tech. She enjoyed holidays and time spent with family and friends but she most enjoyed being a Mother to her daughter, Makenzie. Gina will be remembered for her selflessness, always putting other ahead of herself. Gina Barnette is survived by …

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Willie Beatrice Jones

Staff Written Obituaries

Willie Beatrice Jones passed away on Sunday, January 6, 2019 surrounded by her loved ones. Funeral services will be held Saturday. January 12 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Paul A.M.E. Church, 5th Street, Madison. Family and friends please assemble at the church at 10:15 a.m.  There will be a visitation on Friday evening, January 11, from 6 – 8 p.m. at Jones and Turner Chapel, 484 Burney Street, Madison.

Caboose goes green

Sarah Wibell Community, Featured

Sarah Wibell The red Caboose in Rutledge has gone green. Well, greener than it was. One of the most significant alterations is the elimination of Styrofoam. All of the to-go cups, lids, and straws are now Greenware, a product made entirely of plants that is 100 percent compostable in industrial facilities. “We have wanted to do this for a long time,” said Molly Lesnikowski, who co-owns and operates the Caboose with her husband Ed Hogan. “We use as little disposable as possible, and all of the disposable items are recyclable.” …

Shots fired at Sheriff’s home

Patrick Yost News

By Patrick Yost A Morgan County resident remains in a mental facility under evaluation after he allegedly fired a pistol four times while driving past Morgan County Sheriff Robert Markley’s Old Mill Road residence. According to Chief Deputy Keith Howard, Morgan County Sheriff’s Office, the suspect was stopped by Sheriff Markley after the Wednesday, Dec. 26 incident. Howard said Sheriff Markley was standing next to his vehicle at noon in his driveway when a vehicle drove by his house and he heard the distinct sound of four gunshots. Howard said …

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New year, same issues for Foster Park project

Tia Lynn Ivey News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Foster Park, a controversial proposed housing development behind the historic Foster-Thomason-Miller House in Madison, is on hold again after more than two years of debate and legal challenges. Despite a legal victory granted by the Morgan County Superior Court at the end of November, a group of Historic District residents have filed an appeal application to the Georgia Court of Appeal to hear their case opposing the development, which alleges that the City of Madison wrongly approved a zoning change in order to allow for the …

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Fatality on Highway 441

Tia Lynn Ivey News

By Tia Lynn Ivey An Athens woman was killed in fatal car crash on the 441 Madison Bypass near Sandy Creek Road in Morgan County on Sunday, Dec. 23.  Judy Anne Sellers, 53, was found dead in her Black Dodge Pick-up Truck after suffering a head-on collision with a Blue Honda Accord. The driver of Honda was airlifted to Piedmont Athens Regions with serious injuries.  According to the Madison Police Department, Oconee County alerted Morgan County Dispatch of a black pick-up truck driving recklessly headed south on 441 toward Madison.  …

Man charged with molestation

Patrick Yost News

By Patrick Yost A 67-year-old Madison man was arrested three days before Christmas and charged with molesting and sodomizing an 11-year-old female. According to Chief Deputy Keith Howard, Morgan County Sheriff’s Department, Alfonzo Foster, Fifth Street, Madison, was arrested without incident on Dec. 22 and charged with one count aggravated child molestation, one count, aggravated sodomy and one count enticing a child for indecent purposes. He remains incarcerated in the Morgan County Detention Center. Howard said the arrest came nine days after relatives of the victim presented allegations to investigators …

Bland finding her voice through community work

Brittany Whitley Community

By Brittany Whitley “We were always told we had to be better and therefore, we work really hard to be qualified in what we do,” expressed Morgan County African American Museum (MCAAM) Director Cheryl Bland. And with that ancestral mantra ingrained in her mind, she chased after her dreams but not without aiming for the stars.  The Gray, Ga. native began serving her community as a teen at the Harriet Tubman Museum as a docent, a shadow of her current reality.  “I got to know a lot of the people …

Madison Police Department

Madison Police Department

Patrick Yost Law Enforcement

On Dec. 26 an identity fraud complaint was filed at Lowes, Eatonton Road. According to reports, a man said he had been contacted by Lowe’s that someone had come to the store and attempted to use his identity to purchase more than $3,000 worth of faucets. Reports state that when a cashier recognized discrepancies in the identification and questioned the man, the man became irate, snatched the false ID and left the store. On Dec. 17 a criminal trespass complaint was filed at Budget Inn, Eatonton Road. According to reports, …

Morgan County Sheriff's Office

Morgan County Sheriff’s Office

Patrick Yost Law Enforcement

On Dec. 30 a cruelty toward animals complaint was filed at a Rehoboth Road, Bishop residence. According to reports, a man said his Beagle-mix breed dog went missing and he located the deceased dog behind a neighbor’s house. The dog, which the man said had been a family pet for more than eight years, had apparent shotgun pellets in its leg. The complainant said he was helping a neighbor when, at approximately 11 a.m., he heard a shot. The neighbor’s dog came running up. At 4 p.m. the man searched …

2018, a year in review!

Staff Written Community, Featured

By Sarah Wibell  and Brittany Whitley staff writers January Guy Rogers became Morgan County’s new tax assessor. Rodgers previously worked for the county two decades ago. The “5 Perspectives” art exhibit opened. The collaboration between the Morgan County African American Museum and the Steffen Thomas Museum of Art highlighted work by five contemporary artists celebrating black art. A hotel/motel tax was passed 3-to-2 by Madison’s city council but blocked by State Representative Dave Belton and Senator Burt Jones. The resolution intended to increase a local tax from 5 to 7 …

Spence a National Champion

Sports Reports Featured, Sports

By R. Alan Richardson sports editor For Stewart Spence, winning a National Championship for Valdosta State University (VSU) was anything but easy.  It was a road full of pit stops, hard work, injuries, rehab, and more.  Throughout the process, he never doubted himself.   And neither did his parents or big brother.  If you ask him if it was worth it, he’d give you a resounding, “Yes.”  The record-breaking, Division II Championship season culminated in VSU defeating Ferris State in McKinney, Texas 49-47 in a high-octane thriller that went down …

Lady Dogs take home Sweet South trophy

Sports Reports Featured, Sports

By R. Alan Richardson sports editor Morgan County’s Lady Bulldog basketball team captured the 2018 Sweet South Championship by lapping the field in wins of 29, 38, and 14 points over Apalachee, Lambert, and Veterans respectively.  The final scores were 64-35 over Apalachee, 70-32 over Lambert, and 69-55 in the Championship game over Veterans.  The girls are starting to flex some muscle and show why they will again be a force to contend with in the AAA Region and State Tournaments.  They are now 11-3 overall with the meat of …

Two Tournaments-Two Championships

Sports Reports Sports

By R. Alan Richardson sports editor After playing six games and two tournaments in 10 days, the Morgan County High School boys’ team came away unscathed.  They took home the bacon at the Palmetto Christmas Classic in South Carolina the first weekend and got another Championship win at their own Sweet South Classic Tournament this past Saturday night.  The boys disposed of Apalachee in the first round 72-61, took down Greene County 91-56, and got the Championship win over Druid Hills 68-58.  Tyrin Lawrence was named Tournament MVP and Stevin …

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Clayton Dannie Stewart

Staff Written Obituaries

Clayton Dannie Stewart, 73 of Madison, died December 19, 2018.  Mr. Stewart was born in Cornelia, on December 24, 1944.  He was the son of the late Harvey Lee Stewart and Myrtle Lizzie Gailey Stewart.  He was married to the late Charlene Weatherford Stewart.  Mr. Stewart was retired from the timber industry.  He also had worked for 15 years for Morgan County as an equipment operator.   Mr. Stewart is survived by three sons, Clayton Stewart and Angela, Jimmy Stewart and Richie Stewart.  He also leaves three siblings, Wayne Stewart, …

Grinch arrested before Christmas

Tia Lynn Ivey News

By Tia Lynn Ivey A detached garage is the only structure left standing beside the ruins of the Wagner Family home on Parks Mill Road in Buckhead, which was consumed by ravenous fire at the end of August. This week, the garage was burglarized twice. The thieves reportedly stole about $60,000 worth of belongings stored in the Wagner’s detached garage.  On Friday, Dec. 21, investigators with the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office arrested Thomas Paradise, a 35-year-old Social Circle man and charged him with two counts of burglary in relation to …

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Bypass crash results in fatality

Tia Lynn Ivey News

By Tia Lynn Ivey A fatal crash involving a Morgan County Fire and Rescue (MCFC) truck claimed the life of a Savannah woman driving through Madison on Tuesday, Dec. 18 Kimberly Kimins, 67, succumbed to severe injuries sustained during a collision with a MCFCR truck in route to another emergency call. The accident took place at the Main Street intersection at the 441 Madison Bypass.  Kimins was transported to an Athens-area hospital where she later died.  Firefighter Robert Kapp was also injured in the accident, incurring hairline fractures in his …

Empty Stocking Fund provides plenty

Tia Lynn Ivey News

By Tia Lynn Ivey Over 160 families will wake up Christmas morning to generous spread of gifts for their children thanks to the Morgan County Sheriff’s Office annual Empty Stocking Fund program.  Throughout the year, the Sheriff’s Office has collected donated gifts and money to ensure struggling families still have a wonderful Christmas.  “We have taken it on as a project that we do every year to make sure the kids have a good Christmas with a little something under the tree for them in the morning,” said Sheriff Robert …

Berry placed into Country Music Hall of Fame

Sarah Wibell News

By Sarah Wibell A new member has been added to the Atlanta Country Music Hall of Fame. Golf professional at The Creek Golf Course at Hard Labor Creek State Park David M. Berry was inducted on November 24 after a musical career playing the drums for Del Reeves, performing at the Grand Ole Opry, and backing up artists such as Tanya Tucker, Billie Jo Spears, Johnny Carver, Freddy Fender, Ray Price, and Crystal Gayle among others. The Atlanta Country Music Hall of Fame was established in 1982 by Phyllis Annell …