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Friends, coach share memories of Pickens student killed in wreck

{jcomments off}Jordan Simonds was the type of person “everyone wanted to know”  



Jordan Simonds knew how to touch everyone’s heart. “He was amazing,” says longtime friend. “He knew what life was about.” Photo courtesy of family

 Sixteen-year-old Jordan Matthew Simonds died Saturday, March 11 when the 2004 Jeep Liberty he was driving careened off an embankment on Salem Church Road.

Simonds, a PHS sophomore, was transported to Piedmont Mountainside Hospital and his 15-year-old passenger, Jed Groover, was taken by helicopter to Kennestone Hospital where he remains in intensive care. 

Read more: Friends, coach share memories of Pickens student killed in wreck

PHS sophomore killed in single car wreck

From Pickens Sheriff Press Release

Earlier this afternoon, a tragic automobile accident claimed the life of 16-year-old Jordan Simonds. Along with Jordan, a passenger was also injured and had to be flown to Kennestone Hospital.
The accident only involved one vehicle and it occurred on Salem Church Road. The Georgia State Patrol Responded and is conducting the investigation into the accident at this time.

Jordan was a Sophomore at Pickens High School and played on the PHS Football team. 

We are asking our community to keep the Simonds family, in your thought and prayers. We would also like to ask that everyone pray for the students and staff at Pickens High School as well. School officials are going to have additional counselors on hand at Pickens High School on Monday to assist with any grieving students. 

The passenger was also a juvenile and he was alert and speaking with First Responders on the scene. At this time, we are not releasing his name but can confirm that his family members have been contacted.

Veterans recognize Progress for service to community

vets-award-progress 0007

        Veterans from American Legion Post 149 in Jasper recognized the Pickens Progress in a ceremony at the newspaper office on Main Street Thursday.

Speaking for the Legion members, Ray Smith said, “In grateful recognition of their support of the Pickens County community and especially its veterans, the Progress’ generous willingness to give to those who gave to our country is a model for other community businesses to follow.”

Progress Editor Dan Pool said, “On behalf of our staff, we can think of no other group whose support means so much as the veterans. It really makes us look good when the veterans recognize us. We take pride in serving the community and appreciate the support of the Legion and its members.”

Preschool bomb threat suspect arrested

Authorities blocked entrances to Japser First Baptist Church just after 10 a.m. on Tuesday after a bomb scare. 
     Press Release - Pickens County Sheriff's Office
On March 7th, the City of Jasper Police and Fire Departments received a call regarding a bomb threat being called into the First Baptist Church of Jasper. As they arrived and began the evacuation of the pre-school area, bomb dogs from the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office were called in to check the building. In addition, JPD Detectives began gathering information and opened their investigation.
       Through their investigation, they were led to a suspect by contacting the Gordon County Sheriff’s Office. After learning of an already active warrant of the individual through Gordon County for Terroristic Threats and Acts, Detectives from the Jasper Police Department joined with Detectives from the Pickens Sheriff’s Office to serve the warrant on Mr. Vinh Bao Huynh Chau. Mr. Chau was located at his home on Matthews Road in Jasper, Georgia and was arrested without incident.
      After further investigation, detectives were then able to charge Mr. Chau with the bomb threat on the First Baptist Church. He is currently being held at the Gordon County Jail on the previous Terroristic Threats and has numerous felony warrants from the Jasper Police Department.
     A huge thanks to our partners with the Jasper Police Department, Jasper Fire Department, Pickens County Fire and EMS, and the Gordon County Sheriff’s Office. Thanks to their hard work, the individual responsible was taken into custody on the same day the incident occurred.

Jasper cyclist touring U.S hit by car



   Photo of McGhee crossing into Texas on his bicycle. Unfortunately for McGhee his ride around the country suffered a set back after he was hit by a car in Navasota, Texas.

     While cycling along a farm to market road in southeastern Texas Monday, Mike McGhee was struck by a vehicle, breaking his shoulder, mangling his bike and cracking his guitar.

“Actually I’m in pretty good shape for the shape I’m in. I’m extremely lucky,” McGhee joked during a phone interview from his hotel in Navasota, Texas where he will spend a few days recovering. “I’ve got a broken shoulder, but it’s not really that bad - it doesn’t require surgery.”

Read more: Jasper cyclist touring U.S hit by car