Athens-Clarke County commissioner Jerry NeSmith dies at age of 71

Athens-Clarke County District 6 Commissioner Jerry NeSmith has died at the age of 71.

“We are heartbroken to learn of Commissioner NeSmith’s tragic passing,” Mayor Kelly Girtz said in a statement. “Jerry was a fierce advocate for the businesses and residents of his district, the Westside of Athens, the Athens Farmers Market, Advantage Behavioral Health Systems, the Greenway, and the Atlanta Highway corridor. His passion and energy will be sorely missed in this community. Our condolences go out to his friends and family during this unbelievably difficult time.”

County officials, Gov. Brian Kemp and residents are sending their condolences to NeSmith’s family.

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NeSmith served on the board since 2013 and was running for re-election in Tuesday’s primary. He previously worked as director of information systems for the University of Georgia’s Office of Research.

NeSmith is survived by his wife of 52 years Farol, son Jason, daughter Noel and three grandchildren, according to his county biography page.