As this week marks 48 years as your publisher, we’ve all been busy


This week marks my 48th anniversary as editor and publisher of your local newspaper and, if I do say so myself, we’ve got an issue chock-full of news you will find interesting.

Across the top of our front page is a question: “What do we do now?” Everyone has already heard of the terrible news about our friend, Johnnie Anderson, who is now in critical condition after being struck by a passing auto while directing school traffic last week. We’re among thousands praying daily for Johnnie to recover and soon be back with us but, at best, he has a very long way to go.

The question we post atop our coverage, though, is pertinent. We, and doctors, are doing all that can be done to help poor Johnnie. The question remaining is what does our community do next to resolve the difficult situation facing school and law enforcement officials? The dangerous traffic situation facing us as hundreds go to school every day isn’t going away and the likelihood of state help is dim. Our definition of “heavy” traffic and the DOT’s are not even close.

Regardless, our traffic pattern is certainly dangerous and something must be changed. 

Think. You may have the answer.

After you read that, Sarah Gove offers a splendid reminder of how fortunate we are that community leaders here a half-century ago had the foresight to create Lakeview Golf Club. Golf may not be your thing, but the impact this club has had on our community, our youth and the quality of life here is immeasurable. The headline refers to Lakeview as a “jewel” and that’s an appropriate choice.

Lakeview is the kind of facility many areas would love to have. Today, the club needs help from all of us to shoulder the costly burden of replacing the dam that burst a few months ago. The amount is a lot, but not insurmountable if enough of us chip in. Read about Lakeview and realize what such a club means to us.

Elsewhere is the latest news of a new restaurant coming that is sure to delight thousands. If you’re not familiar with Surcheros, you soon should be. A popular Tex-Mex casual dining option, you may be surprised to learn that, while Surcheros is a fast-growing new franchise eatery, you won’t find another in a town anywhere near the size of Blackshear.

That’s our good fortune and says a lot about the faith the franchise owners have in their menu — and our community.

Remodeling is already underway in the old Larry’s Giant Subs location but the new restaurant won’t be ready here for another couple of months. Stand by and be ready for good food.

Another bit of good news you’ve probably already heard about, but not with all the details we have to offer you, is the arrival of our brand new football coach, Ryan Herring. Although Ryan hails from a well-known football family in Alabama, Blackshear laid claim to this fine young man nearly 20 years ago when he served a short stint here as an assistant coach. We could have forgiven him leaving for a better job then if he hadn’t taken one of our most beautiful, brightest and sweetest young ladies with him — Maggie Allen. Guess we can forgive him now since he’s back to lead the Bears and Maggie and their adorable children will soon be back home as well.

That’s just a sampling of only a small part of the news we have packed into 16 pages this week. If you enjoy our paper, please tell our advertisers. Without them, we could not be here.

Without them, there’s a whole lot you’d never know about — or at least never know the complete facts about.

That’s what I’ve loved doing here since April, 1971 and this week’s issue is just as exciting as that very first one I published nearly a lifetime ago.

Just like the Surcheros owners, I put my faith in Blackshear, but I did it a long time ago. You’ve not let me down. Thanks for reading The Blackshear Times!

• Robert M. Williams, Jr. is Editor & Publisher of The Blackshear Times. Email:

Robert M. Williams, Jr. can be reached at