Roses and thorns: 2/19/12

February 18, 2012 10:36:00 PM



A big hooray to the Lowndes County Master Gardeners, whose latest civic beautification project has been a re-landscaping of the downtown post office. With the help of the city, the Gardeners removed the overgrown tangle of shrubs, ground cover and trees surrounding the P.O. and replaced them with a well-ordered array of plantings. Pat Wheeler, Doris Ebner, Tjujuan Boswell, Frances Deignan, Ann Eagerton, Sharon Carrigan, Linda Monehan, George Swales and Ann Lindquist, along with county agent Jeff Wilson, teamed up on the project. Though they covered the initial costs, the Gardeners are expecting to get financial support for the project from Main Street Columbus and the Columbus-Lowndes Community Foundation. 


Other Master Gardeners projects include a herb garden at The W and landscape work at Lee Home, the YMCA and Lee Park. 


Our area is fortunate to have such an enthusiastic gardening community. The yards and public plantings throughout our towns add greatly to the beauty of the area. 






Roses to the Columbus Police Department for making an arrest in an unsolved murder that occurred 14 years ago. Police Chief Selvain McQueen credits Pete Bowen, L.C. Cockrell, Ed Williams and the CPD Criminal Investigation Division for the arrest of Earnest Talley, who has been charged for the 1997 murder of George Wilbanks. 


McQueen said Friday morning he expects other arrests to be made in other unsolved murders that occurred around the time. "We are going to eat this elephant one bite at a time," McQueen said. 


A rose to Harvey Myrick, who has stepped down as executive director of Grilling on the River, an event he founded. The barbecue competition, held each spring on the Riverwalk, attracts hordes of visitors from all over the region. As a board member of the Columbus Convention and Visitors Bureau, which helps fund the event, Myrick feared a conflict of interest. Myrick should take satisfaction in the success and growth of this popular competition. Nice work, Harvey. 






A rose to area legislators who occupy positions of power in this year's Legislature. Sen. Terry Brown was appointed president pro tempore of the Senate by Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves. In that role, Brown will preside over the Senate in the absence of Reeves and will head the influential Rules Committee. Rep. Jeff Smith will head the House Ways and Means Committee. That group makes decisions on economic development, tax legislation, state buildings (including those on university campuses) and revenue raising activities like gambling and alcohol sales. As chair of the House Insurance Committee, Rep. Gary Chism will control legislation regulating the insurance industry in the state.