SAVANNAH, Ga. -- My first job out of college was with the Savannah Evening Press, the afternoon counterpart to the Savannah Morning News.
The Evening Press put out its last edition in 1996. The Morning News soldiers on.
I was the police reporter for the Evening Press in those days. My desk was right next to the police reporter for the Morning News.
His name was Don Lowery.
Although we had vastly different hours -- he was the late night guy, teaming up with the “man in black” photographer Bob Morris, while I was the early morning guy -- I got to know Don well. He was a first-rate reporter.
And, a good guy.
Sadly, he’s no longer around. He died on July 10 in a federal prison in North Carolina. That’s where he was serving a sentence for one of the stupidest things that anyone could do -- rushing into a bank with a sawed-off shotgun and trying to rob it.
This idiotic stunt took place at a southside bank in 2007. This is neither the time nor the place to go into the details. Let’s just say no one was hurt, that the bank job was a failure and there were other ways for an unemployed, ex-reporter who was dogged by internal demons and money woes to find attention and help.
One of the best things to happen to Don was his wife Sandra. He met her at the newspaper. He couldn’t have asked for a more loving, more loyal spouse.
She gave me the sad news about her husband’s passing. She said his health had rapidly nosedived over the past few weeks.
I’m not sure how many people remember Don, who lived near Guyton and also covered the news for a time in Effingham County. But I do. And for now, I choose to remember the good parts.
After all, none of us is perfect. And, whatever the demons were that were dogging Don, he’s now rid of them. He’s at peace.
My thoughts and prayers to his family, which includes his children and grandchildren.