Run-off April 16 for county superintendent

The E.T. Sims Jr. Recreation Center in Hamilton was busy at approximately 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday, March 5, as Precinct 1A-1D voters cast their vote for the candidates of their choice during the 2024 primary election.
HAMILTON — The 2024 Marion County Schools superintendent and Board of Education District 4 primary elections are headed to a runoff election on Tuesday, April 16.

School house rock’d by Adam Calvert

Singer, songwriter and music video star Adam Calvert reaches out to an audience of Hackleburg High School students late last year during a concert in the school gym planned and executed by Family, Career & Community Leaders of America students and their teacher, Holly Chambers.

One of the most exciting days, if not the most exciting day, I’ve had so far back here at the Journal Record was my experience in Hackleburg when singer, songwriter and music video star Adam Calvert and his band and crew came through late last year.
We were short-staffed that day, so I didn’t get to stay for the entire concert, but I was totally blown away by what I did get to see and hear.
I’ve been to concerts in big cities and the stage production put on in Hackleburg High School’s gym was certainly no less than spectacular.

Primary results

County results for super and board don’t include provisional ballots yet


(From Paige Vick’s livestream last night)

22,233 registered voters in the county

5,937 ballots cast (16/17 precincts reporting in, but the 17th is provisional)

157 were for the Democratic primary

5,779 were Republican primary

1 only voted on amendment


Marion County Superintendent:

Gary McCarley: 1395 (25.21%)

Hackleburg police officer discovers house on fire, saves lives

Hero Hackleburg Police Officer Zach Booth (far right) is shown with police chief Kenny Hallmark (far left) and Lynn Albert Barnette, 72, the homeowner he helped get out of the burning structure, along with Barnette’s granddaughter and friend.
HACKLEBURG — Hackleburg Police Officer Zach Booth is a hero. He will star in this news article, and he could easily be written about by a screenwriter and have his own movie.

Council recognizes Aggie Track and Field team

Shown are Hamilton High School Indoor Track Team members (from left, leaning forward) Maya Jones, Madelyn Hulsey, Kyra Casey and Jane Wiginton, and (next row, from left) Anne Wiginton, Meg Wiginton, Gracie Sanderson, Bristol Evans, Elijah Dollar, Dylan Segraves, Jake Webb and Josh Webb, and (last row, from left) city councilors Scott Robertson and Wade Williams, mayor Bob Page, and councilors Sherry Armstrong, W. Ross Reed and Scott Tyra.
HAMILTON — The Hamilton City Council recognized the Hamilton High School Indoor Track and Field Team at its Tuesday, Feb. 20, meeting.

$2 million grant funding to benefit five county roads

An example of base failure on County Road 63 is shown here. Right: County Road 55 will be a main focus for improvements due to the deep rutting problems as shown here in this five-inch roadway depression. All road photos are courtesy of Marion County Engineer Chris Wilbanks.
HAMILTON — Governor Kay Ivey announced in a press release last month that more than $40 million in state transportation funding is being awarded to cities and counties for various road and bridge projects.

Free outdoor expo Friday

Shown at the Marion County Commission meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 20, during which the commission declared March as “Move Marion County Month,” are upcoming Marion County Outdoor Expo organizers and officials (from left) Alabama Cooperative Extension Service SNAP-Ed Regional Extension Agent for Marion and Walker Counties Ginger Eatman, Northwest RC&D Council Executive Director Lauranne James, Marion County Extension Coordinator Carla Lewis and Marion/Walker counties SNAP-ED Educator Josh Berryhill
HAMILTON — The Alabama Cooperative Extension System and Northwest Resource Conservation and Development will host their inaugural Marion County Outdoor Expo on Friday, March 1.

Making a joyful noise through song and dance

The Afro-American Gospel Choir performs their 45th Anniversary Concert at the University of Alabama in Tuscaloosa on April 24, 2016. Hamilton native George Walker can be seen near the middle, directly to the left of the microphone. He organized the concert, which was a huge success. Walker was the 13th member to join the AAGC in 1971. The choir was established in August and he joined in September. He also led songs and did some directing.
TUSCALOOSA— In the summer of 1971, a group of 12 African American students at the University of Alabama entered a talent show sponsored by the Afro-American Association. They chose to sing a gospel song representative of the source of their faith.

About our curator

Ruthie Whitman

Ruthie Whitman of Hamilton has curated the Black History Month stories and photos for the Journal Record for the last decade. We are grateful to her for the hard work, time and effort she puts into collecting the stories and coordinating the publications to run every week during the month of February. What you are reading today is courtesy of Ruthie Whitman and the author she reached out to for this special celebration and recognition of African Americans and the arts.

Celebrating Black History Month: God is leading Gibbs family

This photo of Rocky Grove Missionary Baptist Church Pastor Clyde Walter McGaha (right) and his wife, Inez, was printed on the front of a pamphlet in celebration of their seventh anniversary at the church. More than a dozen other churches were invited to the ceremony, held on Oct. 15, 1972. Rev. M.D. West preached the sermon for the ceremony. He is the father of our Black History Month curator, Ruthie Whitman.

God is leading the Gibbs Family, and they don’t mind sharing the news. Gifts He is bestowing upon them include ministry and music and much more--including multi-generational blessings and talents.
Latoya Gibbs shared her family’s story with the Journal Record recently, noting her late grandfather, Pastor Clyde Walter McGaha, pastored the Rocky Grove Missionary Baptist Church in Hamilton for years, supported by his wife, Inez.
Her parents are Anthony and Barbara McGaha, and her other grandparents are Pastor Leroy and Annie Harris.

Hamilton continues support of animal aid organizations

From left, Hamilton Police Chief Jordan Carter speaks with Hoof or Paw Director Calen Weston, fundraising director and volunteer Felicia Aycock and volunteer and supporter Marla Minter after the Hamilton City Council voted to continue financially supporting Hoof or Paw and the Marion County Humane Society.
HAMILTON — Both the Marion County Humane Society and Hoof or Paw will continue to receive financial support from the City of Hamilton for their efforts with animal control within the city and surrounding areas.

AirEvac contract renewed in Hamilton

The AirEvac Lifeteam 45 is based in Fayette. This photo was provided by AirEvac with the assistance of AirEvac Area Program Manager Larry Smith, originally of Guin.
HAMILTON — Among the matters conducted during the Hamilton City Council’s Monday, Feb. 5, meeting was the approval for the renewal of the city’s Municipal Site Plan membership with AirMedCare Network.

Free tree giveaway set for Feb. 20, 21

By Kathryn “Chazz” Hirschfeld
HAMILTON & WINFIELD — In honor of Arbor Week, Feb. 18-24, the Alabama Forestry Commission will once again be holding free tree giveaways in the cities of Hamilton and Winfield.
Hamilton’s free trees will be given away on Tuesday, Feb. 20, in front of the Hamilton City Hall from 9-11 a.m.
Winfield’s free trees will be given away on Wednesday, Feb. 21, in front of Winfield City Hall from 9-11 a.m.
All giveaways are while supplies last.

SafePlace supply drive now underway for local needs

Beth Senkbeil of Safeplace (left) and Sarah Emerson of the Marion County Domestic Violence Task Force hold up a flyer promoting their annual supply drive, which benefits local domestic violence survivors and their children who are being housed in the county’s shelter. Businesses, persons and organizations can donate supplies through the month of February.
HAMILTON — Two representatives of the Marion County Domestic Violence Task Force spoke to the Hamilton City Council during its Monday, Feb. 5, meeting regarding their annual supply drive, now underway.