Local native Blount helps military, jumps with Golden Knights
Jeb Blount was given the opportunity to sky dive with the U..S. Army Golden Knights parachute team. He is shown with SFC Tom Melton.
Jeb Blount, an author, executive advisor and keynote speaker, received a chance to jump out of a plane with the U.S. Army Golden Knights.
Through Blount’s work as an author, he published a book titled Fanatical Prospecting (John Wiley & Sons, 2015), a book about opening sales conversations and perpetuating the pipeline. In addition to Fanatical Prospecting, Blount also has seven other best-selling books about sales, leadership and customer experience, and according to his website, he is among the world’s most respected thought leaders on sales, leadership and customer experience.



Harlem dive shop celebrates one-year anniversary
Bubbles or Not celebrated one year in business with a ribbon cutting. Shown are owners Rob and Rose Bennett as well as staff including Tara McNaylor.
Bubbles or Not, a diving shop in Harlem, celebrated its one-year anniversary by joining the Columbia County Chamber on June 17.
The diving shop, located at 211 N. Louisville Street, provides services and training in recreational, technical and rebreather diving. The business also offers local and exotic dive travel in conjunction with the Professional Association of Diving Instructors (PADI) Dive Centers and Resorts.



District attorney’s office gearing up to help resolve unsolved murder cases in Toombs Judicial Circuit
The Toombs Judicial Circuit is focusing on solving unsolved homicide cases. The direction will be a team effort of all staff but headed by William “Bill” Doupe´, Shea Bunch, James Talkington and Marie Johnson.
The Toombs Judicial Circuit is gearing up to help law enforcement solve cold murder cases in McDuffie County and elsewhere in the circuit.
District Attorney William “Bill” Doupe´ recently said in addition to prosecuting crimes already on the docket, his office would be another resource to help law enforcement in resolving cold cases.



McDuffie Co. Schools host first annual STEM camp
Shown from left are Nyla Boyd, Bryson Massey, Colby McCord, Vashti Williams, Jayden James, DJ Brown and Brittany Curry. They are shooting off gliders they created during the camp.
McDuffie County Schools hosted its first ever STEM camp for middle and high schools students in June.
The camp, which ran from June 5 through June 8, was made possible partially through a Rural AP STEM Initiative grant from the Governor's Office of Student Achievement. According to the school system, the goal is to encourage Advanced Placement STEM enrollment at both Thomson-McDuffie Middle School and Thomson High School.




Atkins arrested for agg. assault, many other charges
David C. Atkins
A Warrenton man who allegedly shot at his nephew four times and threatened to beat up his mother shortly before midnight May 31 is in the McDuffie County Jail.
The Warren County Sheriff’s Office arrested David C. Atkins, 63, of the 3600 block of Ansley Road, after he allegedly fired a shotgun at his nephew, fired at deputies and waved the shotgun around.



Early-morning fire destroys local church
Flames leapt above the church’s steeple during the height of the fire.
An early-morning fire destroyed a long-standing church in McDuffie County.
The United House of Prayer for All People, located in the 3000 block of Ellington Airline Road, caught fire at approximately 3:00 a.m. on May 31.
According to Glenn Allen, spokesperson for Insurance and Fire Commissioner Ralph Hudgins, the fire call came into the McDuffie County Dispatch at approximately 3:07 a.m. from the alarm company. When McDuffie County fire personnel arrived on scene, the church was fully involved and the roof in the middle of the church had already collapsed.
Allen said the church suffered $750,000 in estimated damage. The cause of the fire is undetermined, but both the ATF and McDuffie County Fire/EMS found no evidence of foul play.



McDuffie County Fire and EMS partners with National Weather Service to collect rain data
McDuffie County Assistant EMS Director Kay Lord and McDuffie County Fire and EMS Chief Stephen Sewell assist Doug Anderson of the National Weather Service in Columbia, South Carolina, in erecting a rain gauge at the county fire station.
The headquarters of McDuffie Fire and EMS became a partner with the National Weather Service on June 5.
The National Weather Service in Columbia, South Carolina, erected a rain gauge as a cooperative weather observation station at the fire department to help the service acquire more accurate rain data.



City of Harlem celebrates opening of new library
The library in Harlem is located 375 N. Louisville Street. The newly constructed building is now open to the public.
The Columbia County Library - Harlem Branch held its grand opening and ribbon cutting on May 31.
The library, which is part of the Greater Clarks Hill Regional Library System, was completed in early May after approximately one year of construction.



GBI arrests probation officer for sexual assault
An Augusta man has been arrested and charged for alleged sexual contact with one of his probationers.
Melvin Eugene Williams, 44, of the 2600 block of Clarkston Court in Augusta, was arrested Wednesday, May 31 after he turned himself in to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and was transported to the McDuffie County Jail.
According to the Region 7 Office of GBI in Thomson, the Georgia Department of Community Supervision requested its assistance on Jan. 17 in a sexual assault investigation involving Surveillance Officer Melvin Eugene Williams.



Business owner offering $1,000 reward
A local business on East Hill Street is offering a $1,000 reward for information that results in the arrest and conviction of the person or people who burglarized it.





McDuffie Progress

McDuffie Progress





McDuffie Progress



McDuffie Progress