Well, South Cobb, this is my stop. I’m stepping off this train, but it’s been an incredible ride these last couple of years. I’m heading over to Brookhaven Patch.
I will truly miss reporting on this community and seeing you all around. I loved that I could go almost anywhere in South Cobb, and I’d know several people. It’s an incredible feeling to know so many wise, passionate and positive people who believe so strongly in the potential of their own community and work to improve it.
I’ve poured my heart and soul into this site, often getting discouraged, but not enough to give up on you. This was my community, too.
I worked long hours, running from here to there, conducting interviews, attending meetings, manning booths at community events and just being there to report what’s going on in our neighborhoods. I answered your calls, emails and Tweets sometimes at midnight, and even on the weekends.
But what always amazed me was that as hard as I was working, you all were working twice as hard. I was doing my job, and sure, I don’t know where South Cobb Patch ended and I began. It became my lifestyle, not just a job. But no matter where I went, what I was covering, I’d see many of you there at the meetings, in the community, being superstars dedicated to being the change you want to see. You did it in addition to your jobs, in addition to attending the PTA meetings, in addition to dropping the kids off at basketball practice.
South Cobb, you inspired me.
Not only has this position as South Cobb Patch editor made me a better journalist, but it’s made me better in general. You helped me prove to myself that I can do more than I thought I could. For that, I want to say thank you.
I always knew that I wasn’t doing this for me. I was doing this to provide a service for a community that wasn’t being listened to and one that needed a place to sound off on our community’s issues. I did it because I truly cared and wanted to know what was going on in my own community.
I still want to know what’s going to happen with the Riverview Landing development, how the Mableton Form-Based Code will help redevelopment, what steps the City of Austell will take to fill the many vacancies in its downtown including the boarded-up building facing its main street, what will happen with the Murdock shooting case and if the crime rates in South Cobb will continue to decrease.
In my two years here, I’ve seen neighbors unify, host community meetings, research and speak out to successfully shut down a waste transfer station that was illegally taking in municipal solid waste.
I witnessed a woman being told that her brother had been killed and my heart shattered. At that same scene, I talked to neighbors who told me they had to joke because for them, this was life. When the cameras and police went home, when the yellow caution tape was removed, they'd remain. It was a powerful revelation.
I covered a party where a South Cobb resident announced her candidacy. Her father described her as a “difference-maker.” Driving home, I called my father and told him I didn't think there was any better way that someone could be described. It struck me to the core. I don’t know what my legacy will be, and I’ve often asked elected officials here what they hope theirs will be.
I hope that in these last two years, I was able to make a difference with South Cobb Patch. You all made a difference for me.
I hope you all continue to use South Cobb Patch as your community resource by posting your events or letting everyone know about your church's great news or your daughter making honor roll in the announcements. If you have something to say, say it. Just post it on South Cobb Patch, and please keep the dialogue going.
See you around!