Editorial: Former Mayor Williamson Passes

Like the American icon Will Rogers, I think it is probably safe to say that former Hattiesburg Mayor G.D. Williamson never met a man he didn't like.

Mayor Williamson, who passed away this week at the age of 81, would have no doubt have had an equally difficult task finding someone who didn't like him.

Here's a man who started out working for the city operating a backhoe. He ended up serving 16 years as one of two commissioners until Hattiesburg changed from the Mayor/Commissioner form of government to the new wide-spread Mayor/City Council system.

G.D. Williamson was not through with his service to the city when the change occurred, however. He ran for and was elected the first Mayor under the new system and helped greatly from 1985 to 1989 to make the transition a smooth one.

Regardless of whether he was running a backhoe or serving as the city's chief executive, G.D. Williamson never changed. He was the same grass-roots, down-to-earth guy whether talking to educators, businessmen or everyday laborers.

He was pure salt of the earth and a good man who loved and served his city to the utmost of his abilities regardless of the job.

I'm Jim Cameron. Let us hear from you.

Contact Jim Cameron at jcameron@wdam.com