Longtime Jefferson County commissioner takes his own life

Longtime Jefferson County commissioner takes his own life

17 Feb    Finance News
Tommy New

Tommy New

Jefferson County Commissioner H.G. “Tommy” New died Wednesday, Feb. 16, in the early afternoon.

Taylor Funeral Home Director Jerry Taylor was a close friend of New’s. “He was an awful good friend. We called him Uncle Tommy.”

Taylor said he saw the commissioner die.

New drove his white pickup truck to Taylor Funeral Home, got out of the truck, walked to the front porch and ended his life. He was pronounced dead at the scene. New was commissioner of District 4.

“It was 1:05,” Taylor said.

Taylor said he was inside the building and saw New via video cameras installed outside.

“We heard a shot.”

Taylor rushed outside and saw that New was injured.

“I yelled to my secretary to call 911. All my training, all my training; and, I couldn’t think of a thing to do.” Taylor is a firefighter and a first responder.

“I felt for a pulse; and, he didn’t have one,” Taylor said, fresh tears stinging his eyes.

“He was a good friend, a friend I could count on. I just wish he felt like he could count on me. He was such a good man, a good commissioner. Tommy had his own way of doing things; but, he got it done.”

Taylor said New was a unique man.

“He loved, he honestly loved this community. He couldn’t please everybody; but, his heart was 100 percent in it. He cared for everybody in this community, not just people in his district,” Taylor said.

New and Taylor were in the Louisville Lions Club together. Taylor said New was faithful to the Lions Club and faithful to the community.

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New had served on the Jefferson County Board of Commissioners for more than 42 years and as chairman for a term. He was an active member of the Louisville United Methodist Church and participated in the prison ministry program for more than 34 years. He was a veteran of the US Navy and a semi-retired forester.

“The Board of Commissioners ask that you keep Commissioner Tommy New’s family in your prayers,” the Board said in a release.

Considering harming yourself? Ask for help.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7 to provide confidential support and resources for those considering suicide and their loved ones. 1-800-273-TALK (8255)

This article originally appeared on Augusta Chronicle: Longtime Jefferson County official dies by suicide at funeral home

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