2013 in review: January-March

December 22, 2013 

January

1: Hugh Gillis, Georgia’s longest serving lawmaker, died on New Year’s Day at age 94. The Soperton Democrat served more than 55 years in the Georgia General Assembly.

7: Georgia Power announced plans to close Plant Branch in Putnam County. More than 200 jobs were expected to be eliminated by 2015 through retirements and transfers.

8: The merger between Macon State and Middle Georgia colleges became official, and Middle Georgia State College was formed.

13: Macon native Russell Henley, a Stratford Academy graduate, won in his first event on the PGA Tour, rolling to a three-shot victory at the Sony in Honolulu.

14: Lula Gilbert, Macon’s oldest resident, died at age 112. Gilbert was one of about 12 supercentenarians in the U.S.

25: Citing frustration with the Obama administration and congressional gridlock, Georgia’s senior senator, Republican Saxby Chambliss, announced that he would not seek re-election.

February

6: Four people were killed and nine others were injured in a 27-vehicle crash on Interstate 16 westbound near the Bleckley/Laurens county line. Poor visibility at the time of the wrecks was caused by a combination of fog and smoke from a nearby wildfire.

21: Andrew Allen Cook, who murdered a Mercer University couple at Lake Juliette in 1995, was executed at the Georgia Diagnostic and Classification Center near Jackson.

21: Bibb County District Attorney David Cooke announced he was removing capital punishment from the case against Stephen McDaniel, the man charged with killing Mercer University law school graduate Lauren Giddings.

25: The Bibb County school board voted 7-1 in a called meeting to end Superintendent Romain Dallemand’s contract. Under terms of the agreement, the school system paid Dallemand a lump sum of $350,000, plus other benefits.

March

4: The board of trustees at both Stratford Academy and Tattnall Square Academy voted to join Mount de Sales in moving the schools’ interscholastic activities to the Georgia High School Association, effective with the 2014-15 school year.

13: Macon police charged Colethia Williams, 29, with the murder of her three children a little more than three weeks after they died in a house fire when she left them home alone at night.

27: DynCorp, a Robins Air Force Base contractor, announced that it would shut down at the end of May, putting nearly 300 people out of work.

-- Compiled by Beth Gadd

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