Law enforcement officers, judges and others who have worked with District Attorney Buddy McDonald gathered to bid him farewell as he leaves for an early retirement from office.
A farewell reception was held in Picayune Friday for McDonald, who has served as D.A. for the 15th Circuit Court District for seven years and was an assistant D.A. for 16 years.
During the event, McDonald was presented with a couple of gifts and many wishes for a happy retirement to private practice.
Also on hand for the ocassion was new D.A. Hal Kittrell, who was picked by Governor Barbour to finish out McDonald's term.
"I appreciate all these people," McDonald said.
"We've been blessed with the number of people who've helped us over the years and worked with us and supported law enforcement and the District Attorney's office and the court system," McDonald said.
"I'm absolutely elated, I'm absolutely pleased to be taking over the position as District Attorney," said new D.A. Hal Kittrell, who officially takes office on Monday.
"Buddy McDonald, I replace him and he is a tough act to follow...he's done an excellent job for the people of the 15th Circuit Court District and I look to just maintain and to expound upon what he's been working toward," Kittrell said.