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Houston County Leaders Reflect on Year Since Donald Walker's Death

Warner Robins longest-serving mayor, Donald Walker, died a year ago this week.

His death, ruled a suicide, came in the midst of another campaign for re-election.

Several long-time community leaders with the city, county and state talked about their perspective on the direction of Warner Robins in the post-Walker era.

A city council member for 19 years and the current chairman of the Warner Robins Building Authority, Bill Douglas expected turbulence with a change in leadership after Donald Walker's death, but not this much.

Douglas said, "In my years of service, I've never seen it to the extent that it is."

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UnitedHealthcare Again Covering Medical Center

UnitedHealthcare has resumed covering patients at the Medical Center of Central Georgia, according to the insurer and the Medical Center.

In a statement, UnitedHealthcare said that since Monday, the Medical Center is again a "participating facility" for policyholders.

"We are extremely pleased that a new agreement has been reached between UnitedHealthcare and the Medical Center of Central Georgia, including its urgent care centers and other ancillary facilities," according to the statement e-mailed to us by Tracey Lempner, the public-relations director for UnitedHealthcare's southeast region.

Houston Deputies Search Off Booth Road

Acting on a tip, Houston County deputies searched in woods off Booth Road Friday.

 

Capt. Robert Clark of the Houston County Sheriff's office says they got a tip about an injured person in the woods.

He said he could not release any further details on the case. But at mid-afternoon Friday, he said they'd found nothing.

People in Warner Robins reported deputies' cruiser and a state police helicopter involved.

Police spokeswoman Tabitha Pugh says the Warner Robins police are not involved in the search.

 

Houston NAACP Asks John Williams to Resign

Houston County's NAACP says they've had enough of Warner Robins councilman John Williams.

The local chapter's president sent a letter to Williams Tuesday, asking him to resign, citing two racial remarks.

The letter also calls upon other city officials to turn away from "their wicked ways of name calling and disrespecting each other."

On Monday night, when council member Daron Lee complained that he was tired of being disrespected by other members and said, "I'm not working in a cotton field," Williams responded, "You should be."

And last spring, he allegedy told Lee's brother, Warner Robins Redevelopment Agency Director Gary Lee, that "I don't want your skin to touch me." Gary Lee made that claim in a letter to city officials.

Williams is white. The Lees are black.

After those comments, the NAACP's Larry Holmes wrote that Williams has "no business serving on the council."

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Warner Robins Fighting Fire Off 247

Warner Robins fire crews are fighting a fire in an apartment building near North Davis Drive and Highway 247, near Green Street.

 

That's according to Houston County 911.

 

Crews are just now arriving on the scene and there's no word on possible injuries.

 

Check back with 13WMAZ.com for updates on this story today.

Warner Robins Building Authority Steering LEC Project

Plans for a new Warner Robins law enforcement center inched forward Friday, but the group working on the project, wants to put construction on the fast track.

The Warner Robins Building Authority wants construction to start by January, if not sooner.

Building Authority Chairman Bill Douglas said the Warner Robins Building Authority was created by the state legislature more than ten years ago to "manage and hold properties for the city." He said their primary responsibility in recent years has been to oversee the finances of the city golf course.

The Building Authority met with representatives from the Regional Development Commission at City Hall, Friday morning.

They asked the RDC, a planning and development authority for local governments, to work in an advisory role on the police center project.

11-Foot Gator Caught by Houston County Men

Three Houston County men caught an 11 1/2-foot gator after trailing him for more than four hours.

Tony Wrye says it happened Sept. 6 in Mossy Lake near Perry. The three -- Tony, his brother Joey Wrye and buddy Tommy Sorrow -- are all from Houston County.

Wrye says they shot it once with a bow, once with a harpoon, stuck an arrow in it with a buoy attached and followed it around for 4 and a half hours, then hit it with an explosive "bang stick."

It's the second 11-foot-6 gator they've caught in Mossy Lake. The other was three years ago.

Tony Wrye sent us a photo of their latest gator, taken by his wife, Pam.