2018-01-03 / Front Page

...2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, Now 2017 In the archives!

A glance back at stories from the past year!


Two storms passed through Early County Jan. 2, one of which a short time earlier had left four people dead in Rehobeth, Ala. However, no injuries were reported in Early County in the wake of the storms.

Zion Freewill Baptist Church announced Dr. Alex Howell accepted the church’s invitation to serve as pastor.

The regional E911 center went “live” serving Early County emergency calls. Service to Randolph County began in February and service to Stewart County began later.

Miss Mattie Mae Blackman celebrated her 107th birthday Jan. 10 with friends and family at St. Maryland Missionary Baptist Church.

State Representative Gerald Greene, the dean of the Southwest Georgia Delegation and the ranking Republican in the General Assembly, was sworn in Jan. 9 for the beginning of his 17th term in the legislature.

Congressman Sanford Bishop was selected to serve as Ranking Member for the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration.

The Board of Regents approved the consolidation of Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and Bainbridge State College.

Kandi Sue West, 38, of Blakely apparently died from a heart attack or stroke on Old Lucile Road (Monday morning). The 1998 Isuzu Rodeo she was driving left the road, crashed through a wooden fence and crossed a driveway before coming to rest.

The City of Blakely demolished 13 dilapidated houses during 2016 in its efforts to eliminate blight in the city. Demolition of two others was underway and a demolition permit just issued for another in February.

SGA softball standouts Sutton Bridges and Erin Ragan traded in their Lady Warriors jerseys for a new team Jan. 19. Bridges signed with LaGrange College and Ragan signed with Andrew College.

ECHS Region Champs ECHS Region Champs Fourth and fifth grade students at Early County Elementary School competed in the annual spelling bee


Congressman Sanford Bishop was presented the Army Distinguished Civilian Service Medal for his work on the FY 2017 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations bill.

Bobcat standouts Tyler, left, and Tayler Wimberly signed to play football with the Albany State Rams.

Ongoing cases of flu and strep throat prompted school officials to send parents a letter urging them to “take precautions to keep our children healthy.”

Outgoing chamber chairman Kenneth Hall, right, passes the gavel to incoming chairman Bradley Grantham.

The Bobcats defeated Thomasville 74- 65 in the Region 1-AA basketball tournament to win the region championship.

Wesley Chapel AME Church presented its annual Black History Month Banquet Feb. 18 at the Blakely Civic Center.

The 2017 STAR were students Early County High School’s STAR student is Steven Richardson, son of Gary Richardson and Nina Richardson of Blakely. He is also the county system winner and will attend the region STAR banquet in March in Americus. Stephen chose math teacher Leigh Anne Collins as his STAR Teacher. Southwest Georgia Academy’s 2016 STAR student is Cannon Hobbs, daughter of Charles and Holly Hobbs of Blakely. Cannon chose math teacher Gary Woodams as her STAR Teacher.

The Bobcats defeated Southwest Macon 63-48 in the first round of the AA state playoffs.

U.S. Army Major Dalmyra Price Caesar was keynote speaker at the Freedom Council’s 13th Annual Unsung Hero Banquet Feb. 25. Community Unsung Heroes honored included Darrell Alexander, Shirley Harris, Allison Hutchins and the late Jeannette King.

Trey Woolf Trey Woolf E911 facility ribbon cutting and a groundbreaking for new Blakely Chicken to replace long time icon both held in February.


The Bobcats played their way into the “Elite Eight” of the state playoffs, defeating Southwest Macon 63-48 in the first round and Rockmart 93-63 in the second round before losing to Josey 71-58 in the quarterfinals. They finished with a 23-8 season.


The Early County JROTC Bobcat Battalion exceeded standards during inspection by U.S. and earned “Unit with Distinction” Gold Star recognition.

The Georgia DOT announced the four-laning of U.S. 27 through Georgia has been completed. The final leg of the 352-mile corridor was a 24.6 mile stretch south of Cuthbert in Randolph County.

Donnie Yarbrough Donnie Yarbrough ESPLOST, the single item on the March 21 ballot in Early County was approved by voters by a vote of 463-38. Consistent with most reports from across the state, the turnout with only 7.57 percent of the 6,648 registered voters going to the polls.

A Jakin man, 57 yearold Michael Dennis Perry, was killed early Monday morning in a single vehicle accident. According to the GSP accident report, Perry was traveling north on Jakin Road when he lost control of his 2009 Hyundai Tuscon

Coach Trey Woolf announced his retirement earlier in the year. Woolf established himself at the top of an elite list of Bobcat coaches with an overall record of 105-75-3. He coached the Bobcats to eight playoff seasons including his first season when the Bobcats lost the AA championship game to Americus. He was named AA Coach of the Year that season by the Georgia Sports Writers Association.

Grebels Grebels The Early County School Board named Anthony “Donnie” Yarbrough Early County High principal to replace David Ferry who was retiring at the end of the school year.

Michael Grebel of Arlington was honored as the 2017 Ag Producer of the Year at the 8th annual Farmer Appreciation dinner.

John West, owner of West Foods in Edison, was recognized as the best confection during University of Georgia’s 2017 Flavor of Georgia Contest.

Daniel McFather was named head football coach of the Southwest Georgia Academy Warriors.

Members of the Blakely Union Class of 1957 and 1958 gathered for a reunionhe ECHS Bobcats capped their 2016-2017 season by capturing the Region 1-AA championship with a 74-65 win over the Thomasville Bulldogs in the region tournament.

SGA Spelling Bee SGA Spelling Bee

Wimberly twins sign Wimberly twins sign

Peanut Proud people Peanut Proud people

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