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Bullet Richland 03/02/07
Richland Hit Hard By Storms

From The Albany Herald:

AMERICUS — Two people were confirmed dead, there were widespread reports of injuries and most of the city was without power Thursday night after an apparent tornado touched down in the middle of Americus’ historic district.
“The Georgia Emergency Management Agency (GEMA) has confirmed that there were two fatalities in Americus,” Steve Konarik, a meteorologist in Atlanta, reported. “The public has reported that a tornado touched down in the city; we will be sending a team tomorrow to confirm that report.”

Bricks were strewn across city streets, and officials with the Americus Police Department, the Sumter County Sheriff’s Office and Emergency Management personnel were spread throughout the city late Thursday answering calls from a stunned city.

The Sumter Regional Medical Center was among the buildings damaged by the storm and was without power late Thursday. Residences and businesses on Lee, Lamar and Forsyth streets were particularly hard-hit.

Georgia Southwestern State University reported downed trees on its campus, but no injuries had been reported late Thursday.

Wes Sumner, Georgia Southwestern public relations officer, said that classes are canceled until noon today. Only essential personnel is allowed on campus.

“The National Weather Service issued a tornado warning at 9:02 p.m., and reports of a possible tornado were recorded at 9:22 p.m.,” Konarik said. “A tornado watch for the region was extended through 5 a.m., but the heavy weather was expected to be through the area by 2 a.m.”

Sumter County and Americus law enforcement agencies put out a call for assistance to surrounding counties shortly after the storm hit, and a number of area first-responders came to the city to lend support.

The storm was part of a powerful front that moved through the Midwest and the southeastern United States Thursday. By late Thursday night, seven deaths had been confirmed in Alabama and one in Missouri.

Between 60 and 70 homes in Clay County in Southwest Georgia were damaged by the killer storm earlier in the day, a few minutes after a tornado touched down at an Abbeville, Ala., high school. Five students at the school have been confirmed dead.

“There’s just nothing left,” Clay County Sheriff’s spokesperson Donna Brooks said. “Some of the stick-built homes fared batter than the mobile homes, but there were about 60 or 70 homes damaged.”

Some 50 miles to the northeast, in Richland, Police Chief James Edge described his town as a “total mess.”

“Some buildings are just completely gone,” Edge said. “No one has power. So far, no one has been reported killed or hurt.”

Bullet Lumpkin 12/17/06
We Are Number One!
(In Pine Beetle Damage)

An Agent from the Georgia Forestry Commission Visited Property Along Pleasant Valley Road In Lumpkin, mid December, and declared it to be the most damaged area he had ever seen.
'A real dry Summer, and Improper Land Clearing are the most likely reasons', explained Ranger Lance Boyer.
It seems when trees get stressed by long periods of no rain and then are damaged by heavy machinery, they will release a Pheromone which attracts Pine Beetles and Ambrosia Beetles.
Densely packed trees contribute to the spread.
Ranger Boyer suggested removing any pine trees from your property showing signs of Damage now. It seems the Pine Beetles will disappear during the cold weather. 'We don't know where they go after leaving', explained Ranger Boyer.
Hardwoods are not affected.

Georgia Forestry Commission
Bullet Richland 12/19/06
Fox Pizza Victimized By Break-In
Police are searching for a suspect in the burglary of Fox Pizza (810 Nicholson Street), just a week before Christmas. 'It's really a sad thing', commented one resident. Anyone with information should contact the Richland City Police by calling: (229) 887-3530.
A reward is being offered for the name of the person (or persons) involved in this crime.

BulletWestville 1/03/07
Westville Receives $1 Million Gift
Historic Westville has received a $1 million endowment from a Georgia foundation that asked to remain anonymous.

"It's a huge vote of confidence," said Leo Goodsell, executive director of Georgia's "working 1850 town" on the edge of Lumpkin, Ga., in rural Stewart County.

Westville officials received a Dec. 19 telephone call, followed by a letter confirming the unrestricted gift, said Andy Moye, Westville's board chairman.

The endowment has been received and "it's now earning revenue," Goodsell said Wednesday.

In compliance with its own policy, Westville will not use more than 4 percent of its endowment annually, which means it should continue appreciating. It has about $650,000 in additional general endowment funds and has generated about $4 million through its capital campaign.

Bullet Louvale

Bullet Omaha

Storm Damage In Richland
Richland Residents Clear Up Storm Damage
County officials aren't sure if a tornado was responsible for the damage in Richland, Georgia. That's where many homes and businesses were damaged. Residents are definitely counting their blessings.

It looks like the wind cut the Stewart-Webster Printing Company in half.

Charles Lee and his wife had been in business since 1987. They were looking forward to retiring.

Charles Lee says, "We came through the light and my wife said something's not right and so this is what we found when we got here."

And like Lee, many structures in Richland will have to dig out from the many branches and even whole trees that fell during the storm.

Power was also knocked out. But by all accounts, Richland is lucky. Most of the damage can be rebuilt, but not one injury according to the Stewart County Sheriff.

They'll just have to remove the trees, like the one that fell on an antebellum home. It was originally built in the 1830s.

Anna Barrett, a Richland resident says, "When it fell the soot came down with all the insulation they had added when they put the central heat and air in the house so there's soot on everything."

As quick as the storm hit, crews responded to help. Most roads were cleared by the time night fell.

The Pig Fest
It was nice to have the community enjoy a few nights of entertainment provided by the city of Richland.
We all look forward to future community events

Last Revised: 12/19/06