Roads to be named after local leaders

COVINGTON - Three late local leaders will soon be memorialized in a special way that will remind everyone who drives through Mansfield or down U.S. Highway 278 of their many contributions to the community.

The Georgia General Assembly passed legislation this session honoring former county commission chairman Jack Morgan, his son Davis Morgan, also a former county commission chairman, and former Mansfield City Councilman Lamar Hays.

A stretch of U.S. Highway 278 running between Martin Luther King Drive and Ga. Highway 142 will be renamed Jack and Davis Morgan Memorial Highway, while all of Ga. Highway 11 running inside Mansfield city limits will be named Lamar Hays Memorial Parkway.

Jack Hays Morgan, who died earlier this year at age 89, served eight years as chairman of the Board of Commissioners and was also a state representative.

During his tenure as chairman, Morgan oversaw the paving of 142 miles of county roads and the start of the county's first ambulance service and landfill.

"Morgan was an intelligent, fair-minded, dedicated community leader and entrepreneur," said State Sen. John Douglas, R-Social Circle, who introduced the legislation honoring the men. "We all benefited from having him as one of our community and state leaders."

Davis Morgan followed in his father's footsteps and served eight years as county commission chairman, from 1993 to 2000. During that time, he oversaw tremendous growth in the county and spearheaded many projects, including Bear Creek Reservoir, Turner Lake Park, the mental and physical health centers and Gaither Plantation.

Morgan died in 2004 at the age of 49. His widow, Kathy Morgan, is in her first term as chairman of the Board of Commissioners.

Lamar B. Hays, who also died earlier this year, served on the Mansfield City Council for 27 years. He was also the former chief of the Mansfield Volunteer Fire Department.

"As a distinguished Georgian, Hays gave inspiration to many through his high ideals and morals. He was dedicated to improving his community and the lives of his neighbors," Douglas said. "By the example he made of his life, he made this world a better place in which to live."

Hays' daughter, Susan Boss of Loganville, said her family is very pleased that her father will be remembered for his hard work on behalf of Mansfield.

"We are thrilled and appreciative and honored that they would honor Daddy in this way. He loved the town of Mansfield. As many years as he served on the council, he always had the best interest of the town at heart," she said.