albany

civilrightstrail.com

This month Southern tourism departments banded together to unveil The U.S. Civil Rights Trail. The trail links 110 historic sites, from Kansas to Delaware. These are places where the struggle for equality for African Americans left a mark.

For Anthony Mackey, 29, guns were part of his upbringing in Albany, Georgia. As a teen, he joined a gang, and saw firsthand the incredible power of a gun. Mackey says being shot at was a turning point in his life.

Grant Blankenship

The contents of a child’s room–baby dolls, blankets, toys–line the ditch in front of Cary Westbrook’s house in Radium Springs not far outside Albany. She hasn’t lived there since January. The windows are nailed dark with nine month old plywood and the roof is gone.

 

“It’s not habitable at all. At all,” Westbrook said.

 

Jessica Gurell / GPB

Dr. James Black wants opiate drug seekers to know not to look in his emergency room.

“You know, we're not going to be easy prey, so to speak, for people with repeated usage,” Black said. Black is the director of emergency medicine at the Phobe Putney Medical Center in Albany.

In the context of national trends, Southwest Georgia doesn’t have it as bad as other places. Opiate use is in decline here, but Black said he has seen his fair share of overdoses.

The Blue Seas Restaurant is the result of efforts to bring people of different stripes together in west Atlanta. In a neighborhood left in the shadow of a new Falcons stadium, community leaders have built a place for communion, growth, unity, and healthy food. We talk to two of the spiritual leaders behind the restaurant, and ask what they believe this establishment can achieve.

Grant Blankenship / GPB

There is a mountain of shredded trees next to a church on Gillionville Road in Albany.

On a recent morning with the morning fog yet to lift, Brian Jefferson hauled in the day’s first load. About 20 cubic yards of limbs and tree trunks dumped at the bottom of a pile 30 feet tall and with a footprint of a ball field. Jefferson has made a lot of these trips since storms and tornados hit an eight county swath of South Georgia on January 2.

“I was working 11 hours, seven days a week. It’s just long,” he said.